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Full text of "Knight Letter No. 62"


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Silver Jubilee in the Great White North 

The most charming Dayna McCausland and the ever 
gracious L.C. S.Canada played host to a very full weekend 
convocation (22-24 October) celebrating the twenty-fifth 
anniversary of the L.C.S.N.A. A great deal of credit also 
goes to our President, Stephanie Stoffel. '"There's glory 
for you!'" 

Sparkling in the brisk autumn air, Toronto is a 
beautiful cosmopolis, with modern skyscrapers interwoven 
among classic buildings, particularly striking in the Georgian 
and Oxfordian architecture of the University of Toronto 
campus, where much of our muchness was held. 

The Board assembled over a delicious dinner 
on Friday at Le Select Bistro, where attendees 
were from all over the U.S. and Canada, and 
we were honored to have Mark and 
Catherine Richards of the L.C.S. (U.K.) 
in our midst. 

The spirit of the late, much- 
beloved "gentleman collector" Joe 
Brabant (1925-1997, see KL 55) 
was omnipresent. We met first on 
Saturday at the Thomas Fisher Rare 
Book Library 1 on the central St. 
George Campus of the University 
of Toronto, an elongated hexagon of 
a building with six visible and five 
invisible stories (above the ceiling or ^-^if 
below the floor). There were eight glass /* 

cases on the entrance floor with Alice 
material - first edition TTLGs with a presentation 
inscription and drawing by Tenniel and one from Carroll, 
autograph letters, drawings, and many books open to pages 
of striking illustrations (a Brabant specialization). This was 
quite sweet and must be taken in context of Joe's gift of 
some ten to twenty thousand books, manuscripts, letters, 
memorabilia, ephemera, photographs and other Carroll 
items bequeathed to the Fisher - and this in turn should be 
looked at in context of the three hundred other special 
collections it houses, numbering seven hundred thousand 
items, and that itself should be looked at in context of the 
ten million books catalogued at the University of Toronto. 

Richard Landon welcomed us to the magnificent 
library of which he is the Director. The Fisher specializes 
in post-Restoration English and Canadian literature and the 
history of science and medicine, but its holdings range from 
cuneiform tablets to copies of every book by Canadian 
authors as they are printed. He talked a bit about the Brabant 
legacy and the exhibition he and his staff had prepared. Joe 
was unique in many ways, one of which was his devotion to 
one author - most collectors have at least a small collection 
of other writers, but not Joe, who "could not be seduced 
down different trails". It was also Joe's decision that the 
Fisher, which is non-circulating but open to all legitimate 
researchers, would make a better permanent home for his 

1 a virtual visit may be had: http://vvfww.library.utoronto.ca/fisher/ 



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collection than the Osborne, which, although specializing 
in children's literature, was open to the public and hence 
more vulnerable. 

The exhibit continued downstairs, where the walls 
were festooned with theatrical posters ("Alice on Ice!"), 
lobby cards, and Alice in Ad-land, selling cars, mattresses, 
refrigerators, tomato juice, cake mix, guitars, and Guinness 
ale among other things. Many display cases were housed in 
this room, with autograph letters, panoramas, albumen prints, 
mathematical pamphlets, drawings, and the like. The 
exhibition is called "All in the golden afternoon: the 
inventions of Lewis Carroll", runs through 28 January, and 
its fine catalog is available. 2 

Stephanie called us to order, and 
asked us to conjure Joe to be with us. The 
last time our Society met in Toronto 
^ was in May, 1990 and Joe gave a 
O >" mock-legal opinion on the topic 
"Wouldn't It Be Murder?" (to 
leave the baby with the Duchess). 3 
His dear friend Nicholas Maes 
gave us a most warm, funny, and 
affectionate reminiscence of life 
with Joe, whom he had met as a 
very young boy. 4 Joe's twin 
passions - collecting and 
Victoriana - eventually coalesced 
into his obsession Dodgsonian, whom 
^ /r\ ' he felt embodied that era. Joe was 

/jL ^ described as "like Dodgson: precise, erudite, 

^^ formal, yet affectionate, playful, kind and a trifle 
mad". Joe was also, like Phileas Phogg, obsessed with time. 
Nicholas shared with us a few anecdotes: Joe lived in a 
building whose "super" was a dignified emigre named 
"Lukas". When he came up one day to fix a leak or some 
such, he noticed the collection and withdrew a Serbo- 
Croatian volume. It turned out that Lukas was the translator! 
Another time, in the early 1950s, Joe's supervisor at Sun 
Life (where Joe was the senior legal officer) saw a picture 
of Brabant dressed in tails as befitted his role as president 
of the St. James Literary Society, and decided he must be a 
Communist. Nicholas also remembered the sentiment Joe 
showered upon him as Nicholas, after living for eight years 
in Joe's apartment, left to get married. Returning the next 
day, he came upon many workmen putting up additional 
shelves in what had been his bedroom. There was a nod to 
Freud's definition of addiction as part of the madness of 
civilization. 

2 you can purchase a catalog for $35 Canadian / $25 U.S. including 
postage and handling, from Thomas Fisher Rare Book Library, St. 
George Campus, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, M5S 1 A5 
Phone: 416.978.5285. Email: martyn@vax.library.utoronto.ca. 

3 this talk was printed up as a beautiful keepsake for those in atten- 
dance at this meeting by The Cheshire Cat Press, with engravings 
and an epilogue by George Walker. 

4 Nicholas's parents were friends of Joe Brabant, and Nicholas's 
children have added another generation to the relationship 




Our first speaker was Fernando Soto, whose talk 
"What I Tell You Three Times is True': A Medical Maxim 
and Diagnosis for Carroll's Snark", was on the significance 
the number three had for Carroll, the "master of conscious 
serendipity". The events in the Snark closely parallel the 
circumstances surrounding the death of CLD's favorite ne- 
phew, and godson, Charles Hassard Wilcox. Carroll's 1887 
article "Alice on the Stage" contains the famous paragraph 

I was walking on a hill- side, alone, one bright summer day, 
when suddenly there came into my head one line of verse - 
one solitary line - 'For the Snark was a Boojum, you see.' I 
knew not what it meant, then: I know not what it means now; 
but I wrote it down; and, some time afterwards, the rest of 
the stanza occurred to me, that being its last line: and so by 
degrees, at odd moments during the next year or two, the rest 
of the poem pieced itself together, that being its last stanza. 

Morton Cohen's 1976 article "Hark the Snark" pin- 
pointed the day of the memorable walk and conjectured that 
"the patient's [Wilcox's] condition must have weighed heavy 
on [Dodgson's] heart and been etched deeply in his mind." 
Mr. Soto speculated on the significance of the three day 
wait between CLD's offer of coming to Guildford to help 
his sister and his departure, the three hours of sleep Dodgson 
had the night before the walk, and the fact that there were 
three doctors in attendance. The triple diagnosis of phthisis, 
or consumption, must then be "true". He felt that the "last 
line" which was the inspiration for the Snark could also 
refer to the "last words" of Charlie Wilcox and to the last 
words of the Baker's uncle in the poem, who looks 
particularly consumptive in the illustration. 

That Wilcox died of phthisis (pulmonary 
tuberculosis) is significant. The most common "cure" in 
those days was a sea-voyage (as in the Snark) and the 
protagonist was "consumed" at the climax of the poem. Soto 
feels, as is his thesis, that Carroll deliberately and "ration- 
ally" inserted these details into his last masterpiece. 

Continuing these themes in the second part of his 
talk, "The Snark, Easter Greeting, Disease and Death", 
Fernando theorized how several of Carroll's darker writings 
might have dealt with the "pig disease", scrofula, 
tuberculosis of the lymph glands. The word "scrofula" 
Carroll's preliminary sketch for The Pig Tale 




comes from the Latin scrofa, a sow, linguistically related 
to the Greek x°Tp°£ (chceros), a hog. The best treatment 
for it, according to Dunglison's Dictionary of Medical 
Science (1 860) was sea- water bathing. He began with a few 
quotes: 



Maiden, though thy heart may quail 
And thy quivering lip grow pale 
Read the Bellman's tragic tale! 
Is it of life of which it tells? 
Of a pulse that sinks and swells 
Never lacking a chime of bells? 

~ part of an acrostic to Miss Marion Terry 

The Judge left the court, looking deeply disgusted: 

But the Snark, though a little aghast, 
As the lawyer to whom the defence was instructed, 

Went bellowing on to the last 

~ the Barrister's Dream sequence in the Snark 

A certain Camel head him shout - 

A Camel with a hump. 
'Oh, is it Grief, or is it Gout? 
What is this bellowing about?' 
That Pig replied, with quivering snout, 

'Because I cannot jump!' 

~ "The Pig's Tale" in Sylvie and Bruno 

Fernando demonstrated, using Groce's 1811 
Dictionary of the Vulgar Tongue and other such works, that 
"bellows" quite naturally referred to the lungs; "boots" was 
"the ... officer... whose job is to skink, that is, to stir the 
fire, snuff the candles, and ring the bell"; that "light" referred 
both to a "will-o'-the wisp; or corpse-candle" and to the 
lungs, which may explain why the Snark is said to be "handy 
for striking a light". Bells and candles were common 
referents to death, and a bell is ringing in the background of 
the illustration of the Baker's Uncle. 

Furthermore, Brewer's Dictionary of Phrase and 
Fable refers to "the five dark marks on the inner side of 
each of the pig's forelegs (that) are supposed to be the marks 
of the Devil's claws when they entered the swine" [Mark V, 
11-15], and Soto correlated them with the five 
"unmistakable marks" of the Snark. 

Wright's English Dialect Dictionary contains the 
fascinating entry "SNORK, v. and sb....also in the forms 
snark... 1. v. To inhale noisily through the nose; to snort, to 
snore, grunt; ...Hence Snorker, sb. A young pig, a porker." 
Noisy inhalations are associated with TB, and "snork" can 
be seen as another Snark/pig/scrofula connection. 

Was the Snark, then, simply a pig - one Carroll 
associated with scrofula? Dodgson was fascinated by 
medicine, and certainly had enough knowledge to make this 
connection. Fernando asked us to look at the ears of the 
Baker's uncle in Holiday's drawing (scrofula was thought 
to be hereditary), the pig-baby in AW and both Carroll's and 
Furniss' pictures of sick pigs. His talk is being expanded 
and will appear in a forthcoming issue of The Carrollian. 

A lively question period followed, discussing 
evidence vs. coincidence, and Charlie Lovett brought up 
Carroll's 1892 letter to the St. James's Gazette on where 
the burden of proof (onus probandi) lies. 5 

5 This incident is detailed in Lovett's invaluable Lewis Carroll and 
the Press, Oak Knoll Press, 1999. 1884718876. 



We then took a few hours to lunch and to mosey 
over to the foyer of the Osborne Library, scene of Friday 
afternoon's Maxine Schaefer Memorial Outreach Fund 
Reading. The entranceway is flanked by a lion and a gryphon, 
their mascot, and we were led down, down, down to a 
cheerful meeting room in a sub-basement. Dayna welcomed 
us, and introduced our next speaker, Leslie McGrath of the 
Osborne Collection of Children's Literature, part of the 
Toronto Public Library system, which is now the second 
largest in North America. The Osborne itself held an exhibit 
"We're All Mad Here" during CLD's 1998 death centenary 
year, and has hosted two L.C. S.Canada meetings. 

Ms. McGrath began by showing slides demon- 
strating the great breadth of their holdings - from a 14 th 
century >Esop through 16 th c. hornbooks up to the present 
day, including the original engravings for the Snark and 
Sylvie and Bruno. Her talk began "Perhaps less familiar 
are the reading materials of Carroll's own childhood. These 
are partly the makings of what Carroll called the 'bits and 
scraps' - the single ideas that were seized and added into 
the Alice books. Scholars have written about these volumes, 
but opportunities to look at them are limited... In the 
overview of holdings, you have seen the gradual progression 
of children's books from purely instructional to works of 
amusement, with a heavy dose of moral stories at the 
midpoint. Carroll, as a well-read child, would have faced a 
bookshelf full of these moral stories, with the odd bit of 
relief through old classics not written for children (such as 
Cervantes and Defoe) but widely read by them." 

Among the books she discussed (and illustrated 
with slides) were Puritan "children's books" like Happy 
Death Stories (1672); the collected poetry of Isaac Watts 
(1715) which includes "The Sluggard" and "How doth the 
little busy bee. . .", sources of Carrollian satires; the Curious 
Hieroglyphic Bible - a rebus and riddle book; Pilgrim 's 
Progress, which had a Revelation-inspired framing dream- 
device; "moral writings" such as Barbauld's Hymns in Prose 
for Children (the author's belief was that plain language 
and instruction would "avoid prolonging the imbecility of 
childhood"); Sherwood's Little Henry and His Bearer 
Boosy (1815) which has been described as "touching the 
heart without turning the stomach"; Scott's Waverly novels; 
the brothers Grimm; Sinclair's Holiday House, where 
naughty children were sometimes amusing, not condemned, 
also contained an amusing fairy-tale; and some periodicals 
of that time. 

Ms. McGrath discussed Dodgson's concerns for 
the social order of the day - the poor were to be pitied, but 
there was no impetus for social change. "Carroll would not 
be described as a social revolutionary, but in publishing his 
books he brought the more timeless emblem story of the 
fairy tale into a current social context, pointing out its 
foibles, and those of the adults who enacted it." She 
concluded "Carroll's contribution to righting the wrongs of 
the day was to provide escape literature - to provide a 
vocabulary of nonsense for children that allowed some of 
the more burdensome aspects of being small and powerless 



in a restrictive society, and some of its giants and ogres, to 
be laughed at and made ridiculous. The shelves at Osborne 
are divided into stories before and after 1850, but more 
properly, they would be divided into 'before Carroll' and 
'after Carroll'. No one achieved quite the heights of 
nonsense since, but as the evidence shows, young readers 
will never stop wanting what Carroll perfected in Alice." 

Next the vaudeville team of Walker & Poole, with 
Andy Malcolm as their "second banana", entertained us with 
their fine comedy sty lings. Actually, these fine artists from 
the Cheshire Cat Press - George Walker is the engraver 
and illustrator, Bill Poole the typesetter and designer, Andy 
an associate - were responsible for bringing to life Joe 
Brabant's vision of a fine press set of AW and TTLG. In 1981, 
a small Christmas keepsake, "The Origins of the Poems of 
AW", printed by Bill was brought to Joe's attention, and Bill 
said he was invited to lunch by this formally-dressed "nice 
old man" (who turned out to be, in fact, two years Bill's 
junior). For the next fourteen years at the breakneck speed 
of two pages a month, George, Bill, and Joe would have 
luncheon and discuss their progress. 

"One never really, really knows a book until one 
has set it by hand", Poole remarked. 6 Every letter becomes 
your friend (or, when in short supply, your adversary). Even 
linotyped books do not come close to the intimacy of pulling 
individual letters, printing the pages, and dropping the letters 
back into a case. They did this to keep to the spirit of 
Carroll's experience (for instance, having the same technical 
difficulties in printing "Jabberwocky" backwards). Bill also 
reminded us that typesetters were the elite of the working 
class in Victorian days - serving an apprenticeship, receiving 
high wages, and, above all, having to be literate. 

When the book was released in an edition of 177 
with ten on handmade paper (made from "old socks, prints, 
and proofs" said George), each one was bound differently - 
some by the Cheshire boys, some by the subscribers. A few 
of these were on display, such as a hardwood box with cards 
engraved on it, containing a music box which played "Twinkle, 
Twinkle, Little Bat" when opened to that page. 

George brought along some of his engraving tools 
and showed us how he worked, as was done in days of yore. 
Tools were of such delicacy that when we look at a "halftone" 
photograph in a book printed in Victorian times, it is 
astonishing to remember that that "photograph" actually had 
to be engraved by hand into a block of wood before 
printing! 

A frontispiece depicting the Jabberwock was 
faithful to Carroll's original intention for TTLG. Further 
details of the Cheshire Cat printing are found in AX 55. 

After Andy read a frightening yet amusing series 
of letters between Brabant, Macmillan and A.P.Watt (their 
solicitors) and passed out to each of us a handsome bound 
keepsake edition of Joe Brabant's "Wouldn't It Be Murder" 

6 "I must say that you can not tell what a picture really is or what an 
object really is until you dust it every day and you can not tell what a 
book is until you type or proofread it. It then does something to you 
that only reading can never do." - Alice B. Toklas 



BIZARRO Piraro 



speech, we scattered about Toronto. 

The Publications Committee, having found 
themselves thrown out of the library, improvised a meeting 
room at the nearest Donut shop, where the very composed 
Ms. Lucy Lovett (aet. 714 exactly) performed her duties as 
the "designated donut eater" so the rest of us could confer 
in relative peace. 

The Society next coalesced in the reception room 
of the Royal Canadian Military Institute, which was chosen 
for its Victorian atmosphere. There we met over cocktails 
with more LCSC members, including a half-dozen from the 
"Bootmakers", an organization of Sherlockians named not 
for the member of the Snark-hunting crew, but for "the only 
reference to Toronto in the Holmes canon" 7 . Several of 
them were in costume. 

After a tasty dinner, we were welcomed by Dayna 
who introduced "Lewis Carroll", who bore a remarkable 
resemblance to Donny Zaldin of the LCSC and Bootmakers. 
He gave us a "magic lantern" (slide) show 
of himself (as CLD) and "Alice" (Dayna's 
daughter) on their Adventures in Toronto - 
from a bakery called the "Queen of Tarts" 
to a giant chair outside a furniture mart. 
Then Dayna presided over a quiz written by 
Brian Gibson [at far left]. 

Andy Malcolm's "day job" is as a 
"Foley artist" 8 on films, and has worked on 
many major releases. Combining his 
passions, he is himself directing and 
producing a film, "A Golden Afternoon", 
which is a series of vignettes or "a slice of 
the life" of CLD and Alice circa 1859, 
including photography, storytelling, and a 
boat trip. It will be about an hour long and 
is being shot with nonprofessional actors, 
as there is no dialog. In fact, in the topsy- 
turvy Wonderland logic we're all so fond 
of, he is shooting it first, and will come up with a script 
afterwards (to be narrated by two persons sounding like 
Dodgson and Alice). 

Andy shared with us some of the meticulously 
crafted props, including a working reproduction of 
Dodgson 's camera, which was made by an artisan he found 
in Colloidon Quarterly, a magazine devoted to persons still 
using that process for taking pictures! Andy showed us how 
the camera was used, and how the entire process from 
preparation of the glass plate to development had to be done 
within 30 minutes. 

Andy also had faithful reproductions of Dodgson's 

7 The Hound of the Baskervilles, Chapter 14: "Holmes sank to his 
waist as he stepped from the path to seize it, and had we not been 
there to drag him out he could never have set his foot upon firm land 
again. He held an old black boot in the air. 

'Meyers, Toronto,' was printed on the leather inside. 

'It is worth a mud bath,' said he. 'It is our friend Sir Henry's missing 

boot.'" 

8 synching sound-effects to film in post-production 



2nd so my wain message to you kid! 
is ihis: JUSf SWJ'MQ To WALLS 



diaries, photo albums and some of the books from his library 
to further enhance the realism of the shoot. It will be done 
on digital video, and he hopes to premiere it at our Spring 
gathering in New York or, more likely, next Fall's Texas 
meeting. 

Stephanie then announced our 25 th anniversary, and 
distributed the booklets, admirably edited by August Imholtz 
and fondly recalling a quarter century of "golden afternoons" 
to members present along with our official LCSNA pin! All 
currently active members not in attendance have been mailed 
the book and pin (and errata slip). 

Sunday may be a day of rest for some, but not the 
LCSNA&C! We met inside the Art Gallery of Ontario 
(AGO) in the Tanenbaum Center for European Art in front 
of the Arthur Hughes' painting "Girl with Lilacs" which had 
hung over Dodgson's mantle. 9 Here it was situated between 
Waterhouse's "Lady of Shallott" and a large painting of 
"Electra at the Tomb of Agamemnon" by William Blake 
Richmond, whose painting of "The 
Sisters" (Alice, Lorina, and Edith 
Liddell in Llandudno) is familiar to 
us all. Having seen "Girl with 
Lilacs" in reproduction does not 
prepare one for the sweet radiance 
and delicate brushwork of the 
original. 

This painting was either a 
preliminary study for, or a partial 
copy of a larger Hughes work, 
"Silver & Gold", 10 and this picture, 
a bit claustrophobic with a flat 
perspective, is tightly framed in its 
original by Hughes. The purple 
lilacs may be seen as "the first 
bloom of love" in the Victorian 
"Language of Flowers". 

Dayna gave us a talk on the 
Pre-Rafaelite brotherhood, founded by Dante Gabriel 
Rossetti in 1848, and dedicated to symbolism, bright colors, 
simplicity, and a revitalization of the "degeneracy" into 
which painting had fallen. Dodgson, whose taste in painting 
was fairly academic and conservative, preferring the 
narrative and sentimental, was welcomed within their society 
- but as a photographer and fellow-artist, not as a writer of 
children's books. He moved easily in their circle, observing 
and photographing many of them as they created their works. 
Some serendipitous influences were felt: Carroll wrote the 
poem "After Three Days" (1861) after seeing Holman Hunt's 
picture "The Finding of Christ in the Temple"; Sir John 
Everett Millais' "My First Sermon" (modelled by his 
daughter Effie) was parodied by Tenniel in his picture of 
the railway carriage and his "Sir Isumbras at the Ford" might 
have been a model for the White Knight. Dodgson also 
enjoyed Rossetti 's unfinished painting "Found" for its theme 
of redemption and rescue. Rossetti's daughter Christina is 

9 See KL 58, p. 13 

111 see the letter from Hugues Lebailly in KL 59, p.8 




credited with the very first Alice parody, Speaking 
Likenesses. Artist / sculptor George Frederic Watts married 
Ellen Terry. Dodgson enjoyed a long friendship with the 
Hughes children (Dayna read his delighful 1871 letter to 
Agnes & Amy about flattening three cats, and pointed out 
that the name "Amy" was scratched into a tree in "Silver and 
Gold"). Arthur Hughes also illustrated the first printings of 
George Macdonald's At the Back of the North Wind and 
The Light Princess. 

After communing with the painting a bit longer, we 
wandered around AGO, finding a piece consisting of a car 
door with the number 42 etched on the window, and then 
basking in the radiance of one of the finest Henry Moore 
collections there is. Then home we steered, a merry crew, 
beneath the setting sun. 



> 



Further reflections from Cindy Watter: "No Lewis 
Carroll Society meeting is complete without sneaking into 
a bookstore, my version of the crack house hoping it hasn't 
been already picked bare by your friends. Dayna hauled me 
up the stairs to David Mason's on Queen Street. I felt as if I 
were being dragged through the rabbit hole in reverse, 
emerging into a delightfully shadowy, cluttered shop which 
seemed to have all the desirable attributes, including a three 
legged cat and a helpful, friendly shopkeeper. This last was 
most appreciated, since we were five minutes short of 
closing time. 

Dayna wondered out loud why all the Carrolliana 
seemed to be dispersed all over the shop. I took advantage 
of it, finding Lewis Carroll Observed, which had been on 
my "look for" list for a few years. 

This shop made me wish I lived in Toronto: deluxe 
Arthur Rackhams; hearty Edwardian girls' school stories, 
early 20th century novels in their original jackets, and a 
revolving bookcase stuffed with hilarious 19th century 
sermons. I have never seen such an eclectic assortment with 
such a high percentage of things i really liked. 

Now, I always thought that the parents of old were 
sadists who liked to frighten their progeny into fits, but Ms. 
McGrath said that was not the case. On the contrary, they 
loved their children very much, and the shocking infant 
mortality rate was most saddening to them. Parents felt it 
was important to prepare their children for eternity - an 
eternity in heaven, preferably. Therefore, books like The 
Fairchild Family (CLDII certainly read it) filled a need. In 
one story, Mr. Fairchild, concerned that his children were 
fighting among themselves, contrived a cheery family outing 
to a gallows, from whence dangled the rotting corpse of a 
fratricide. He made the little Fairchilds stand underneath it, 
and told them of the certain fate that awaited them if they 
continued to quarrel with each other. 

I told the story to my own classroom a few days 
later, and discovered the literary equivalent of the stun gun." 



Alas! In Punderland 

By Brian Gibson and Dayna McCausland 
{with some uncalled-for revisions by the editor} 

"'It's a pun!' the King added in an angry tone, and 
everybody laughed." 

Most of the answers involve some capital pun-ishment, 
but not all. 

Alice's Adventures in Wonderland 

1 . A red nose, a white column, and a blue quean 

2. Hipster from Guevara's county 

3. Talk show host's surname 

4. Curve from the Netherlands 

5 . Burning circles & hoarders of shrubbery 

6. I did the following. Who am I? 

stand a 1 

head c b e 

k nose 

7. Match the "factions" of the court to the words 
below 

mine attack foot cat 

8. Macbeth 's flaw, a pretty girl, plastic surgery gone 
wrong, your feelings for this useless question 

9. Unscramble the words below 

O odd | legate | pi game | raptor | low 

10. As a Canadian might otherwise say "He died." 

Through the Looking-Glass 

11. Unscramble the following words: 
Girly tile | sore | to live | park slur 

12. The * square is mostly water 

1 3 . Each of the following words suggests another 
word which in turn links to the word "fly": 

forest | Pent | fresh | can 

14. Musical group, uh, seize | one of a kind kernel 

1 5 . Chatter while on one half of a two-way radio 

16. Two heartburn medicine tablets in a row 

17. Identify the characters from this poem: 

a) not a toy store, but a store that sells just one 
partition 

b) this certain fish can come in 

c) Yiddish encouragement to mix some soup 
with a spoon 

Answers on p. 12 



Charles Dodgson and the Solution of the Alternating Sign Matrix Conjecture 

Francine F. Abeles 

Introduction 

Anyone familiar with Charles Dodgson's mathematical work knows of his paper "Condensation of Determinants" 
read to the Royal Society by Bartholomew Price and published in the Society's Proceedings in 1866, giving a simple 
method to compute determinants. (Reprinted in Abeles 1994, 170-80) What is generally not known is that almost 
120 years later, his method was shown to be a critical step in the solution of an important problem in enumerative 
combinatorics known as the "alternating sign matrix conjecture". The chronology of this problem in the 19 th century 
begins with two papers by the great mathematicians Carl G. J. Jacobi (1833) and James J. Sylvester (1851) on the 
theory of determinants. 

Recently, a book and an article on this subject in the Notices of the American Mathematical Society have appeared. 
(Bressoud 1999; Bressoud and Propp 1999) What follows is a simplified version of a portion of the article which, if 
readers will invest a little time and effort, will reward them with insight into how mathematical problems are posed 
and solved, as well as with additional evidence that Dodgson was much more than a recreational mathematician, 
despite the relative lack of recognition of this aspect of his work. 

Alternating Sign Matrices 

An alternating sign matrix (ASM) is a square matrix — a block of 0s, Is, and -Is — where the entries in each row 
and column sum to 1 and the nonzero entries in each row and column alternate in sign. Formulated in the period 
1982 - 86 by David P. Robbins and Howard Rumsey, Jr. in their study of Dodgson's condensation method, an ASM 
also can be viewed as a generalized permutation matrix. (Robbins and Rumsey 1986) An example will make these 

(a b c} 
d e f 

kS h *j 

matrices - square matrices whose entries are all 0s except for one entry of 1 in each row and column (refer to Figure 

(d e /> 

g h i 



ideas clear. For the general 3 x 3 matrix, A 



there are seven ASMs, six of which are permutation 



1). For example, one of these, (l)bfg, multiplying A produces 



a b c 



The term (-l)bdi is associated with the 



matrix where a 1 appears in the positions occupied by b, d, and i, in A and similarly for the other terms and their 
associated matrices. 



(l)aei 



r l 0" 




^0 1 0^ 




(\ 0" 




r o o r 


1 


(l)bfg = 


1 


(-l)afh = 


1 


(l)cdh = 


1 


K \j 




J 0j 




,0 1 0, 




,0 1 0, 



(-l)bdi 



0) 


1 



(-l)ceg = 



(0)bde _1 fh 



1 




1 



0^ 

1 





Figure 1. The 3 x 3 ASMs 

Each term above includes a (1) or a (-1) according to the way the determinant is evaluated using the condensation 
method as the example in the next section will show. 

For the general 4x4 matrix there are 24 permutation matrices, plus 18 matrices of 0s, Is and -Is in which the 
nonzero entries in each row and column alternate in sign. The general n * n matrix where n is any positive integer 
can be viewed in the same way. 

Dodgson's Condensation Method 

( ae — bd bf - ce^] 
Using condensation on the matrix A, we obtain as the first step the 2 x 2 matrix and as the next 

K dh-eg ei-fli) 

2 2 

step the 1 x l matrix, ((ae i-aefh-bdei+bdfh) - (bdfh-befg-cdeh+ce g)) / e . Collecting the terms, we have 
(l)aei + (-l)afh + (-l)bdi + (0)bde" 1 fh + (l)bfg + (l)cdh + (-l)ceg. 

These seven terms are the ASMs of a 3 x 3 matrix with the term (0)bde being an extra (vanishing) term because 
multiplying A by it and then evaluating the determinant of the product yields 0. This result generalizes to n x n 
matrices. 



Bressoud and Propp have this to say about Dodgson's method: 

Although the use of division may seem like a liability (because it can produce Os that must be removed), it 
actually provides a useful form of error checking for hand calculations with integer matrices: when the algorithm 
is performed properly (with extra provisos for avoiding division by 0), all the entries of all the intervening 
matrices are integers, so that when a division fails to come out evenly, one can be sure that a mistake has been 
made somewhere. The method is also useful for computer calculations, especially since it can be executed in 
parallel by many processors. (Bressoud and Propp 1999, 638) 

The Refined ASM Conjecture (RASM) 

Trying to answer the natural question "how many ASMs are there?" Robbins, Rumsey and William H. Mills found 
the sequence S n = 1, 2, 7, 42, 429, 7436, 218348, 10850216, 91 1835460, ... a sequence they had never seen before. 
Since each ASM has just one +1 in its top row, they divided the ASMs into classes according to the position of the 
+1, shown below. 

1 

1 1 

2 3 2 

7 14 14 7 

42 105 135 105 42 

429 1287 2002 2002 1287 429 

Figure 2. The counts of n x n ASMs with a 1 at the top of column k 

The sum of the entries in each row n is the number of ASMs for the corresponding n x n matrices, and the k th entry 
of the 11 th row is the number ofn^n ASMs having a 1 in row 1, column k. For example, forn = 4, 7+14+14+7 = 
42 is the number of ASMs associated with a4M matrix. And when k=2 and n=3, you can check in Figure 1 that 
the number of 3 x 3 ASMs that have a 1 in row 1, column 2 is 3. 

Notice in Figure 2 that in each row, the first entry is the sum of the entries in the row above it, e.g. 7 = 2 + 3+2. 
When Robbins, Rumsey and Mills took ratios of horizontally adjacent entries, reducing them suitably, they obtained 

2/2 

2/3 3/2 

2/4 5/5 4/2 

2/5 7/9 9/7 5/2 

2/6 9/14 16/16 14/9 6/2 

Figure 3. The ratios of adjacent terms in Figure 2 

For example, in the third row we have the ratios 2/3 and 3/2 for the entries 2, 3, 2. 

In Figure 3 the n 111 row begins with 2/(n+ 1 ) and ends with (n+ 1 )/2 . For example, when n = 4, row 4 begins with 

2/5 and ends with 5/2. They now observed that each ratio seems to come from the two ratios diagonally above it by 

adding their numerators and denominators. For example, 16/16=7+9/9+7. 

This pattern, verified up to n = 20, became known as the Refined ASM Conjecture, RASM. 

The ASM Conjecture 

Observing that the first entry in each row in Figure 2 is the sum of the entries in the previous row, the RASM 

conjecture implies that A n , the number of the set of n x n ASMs, can be expressed as A = TT — — where ! 

" *i(n + j)! 

denotes the factorial function, e.g. 51 = 5x4x3x2x1 = 120. This became known as the ASM conjecture. 

For example a _ FT (3J + Q! Evaluating this expression for the successive values of j, we have 
4 U(4 + j)! 

j=0: 1! / 4! = 1/24 
j = l: 4! / 5! = 1/5 
j=2: 7! / 6! = 7 
j=3: 10! / 7! = 720 
The product of these terms is 42, the fourth term in the sequence S n . 



Unexpectedly, Robbins, Rumsey and Mills learned that this sequence had appeared earlier where it enumerated a 
different class of combinatorial elements called descending plane partitions, DPPs. (Andrews 1979) Plane partitions, 
which generalize the idea of number partitions, were studied by Percy A. MacMahon in the late 19 th and early part of 
this century. 

Here is an example of a number partition: there are five ways to represent the positive integer 4 as the sum of 
positive integers: 4, 3 + 1, 2+2, 2+1 + 1, 1 + 1 + 1 + 1 .This is a one dimensional representation. Plane partitions are 
two dimensional objects. MacMahon was able to give a formula for the number of plane partitions for the number n. 

Using Andrew's formula for DPPs, Robbins, Rumsey and Mills tried to prove the ASM conjecture by showing there 
is a one-to-one correspondence between ASMs and DPPs. Although they were unable to prove the conjecture in this 
way, their attempt led them to the proof of another, the Macdonald conjecture, formulated in 1979 by Ian G. 
Macdonald for another class of combinatorial objects, the cyclically symmetrical plane partitions of an integer, 
CSPPs. 

Conclusion 

The ASM conjecture was proved true in 1995 when 89 referees determined that the latest version of a proof first 
given by Doron Zeilberger in 1992 was correct. (Zeilberger 1996) 

The theory of determinants that Dodgson contributed to and understood deeply evolved into invariant theory in the 
19 th century: the study of properties that are not changed by a specific transformation. ASMs and symmetrical plane 
partitions are two of its children. Results discovered along the route to the proof of the ASM conjecture have 
connected them, and new applications to still other descendants of invariant theory have been established and 
continue to bear fruit. 

REFERENCES 

Abeles, Francine F., ed. The mathematical 
pamphlets of Charles Lutwidge Dodgson and 
related pieces. New York: LCSNA and distributed 
by the University Press of Virginia, Charlottesville, 
1994. 

Andrews, George E. Plane partitions (III): 

The weak Macdonald conjecture. Invent. Math. 53 

(1979), 193-225. 

Bressoud, David M. Proofs and confirmations: 
The story of the alternating sign matrix conjecture. 
Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1999. 

Bressoud, David and James Propp. How the 
alternating sign matrix conjecture was solved. 
Notices of the AMS 46 (1999), 637-46. 

Macdonald, Ian G. Symmetric functions and Hall 
polynomials. Oxford: Clarendon press, 1979. 

MacMahon, Percy A. Combinatorial analysis, 
vol. I, II. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 
1915,1916. 

David P. Robbins and Howard Rumsey, Jr. 
Determinants and alternating sign matrices. 
Advances in Mathematics 62 (1986), 169-84. 

Zeilberger, Doron. Proof of the alternating sign 
matrix conjecture. Electron. J. Comb. 3 (2)(1996), 
Research Paper 13. 




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Serendipity 

It's the hope that's important. Big part of belief, hope. 
Give people jam today and they'll just sit and eat it. Jam 
tomorrow, now - that'll keep them going forever. 

~ Hogfather by Terry Pratchett 

"The misanthrope turns twenty" 

In Sylvie and Bruno, one of the lesser-known works by 
the author of Alice in Wonderland, Bruno tells Sylvie 
that there are "around one thousand and two pigs" lying 
in the field. Sylvie responds that if he is not sure of the 
total number he should say "around one thousand" and 
ignore the extra two, to which Bruno replies very 
gravely, that, on the contrary, it is of the two pigs that he 
is sure because they are right in front of him, while of 
the other thousand he has no certainty. 
The author. . .knew well that one thousand and two is 
just as arbitrary a number as one thousand. It is only our 
use of the decimal system that makes us prefer one 
number to the other. It is this same passion for 
multiples of ten that will lead to so few people going to 
bed early on December 3 1 , despite the purely 
conventional nature of the calendar and the fact that, as 
we have been told ad nauseam, there was no year zero 
and therefore that the third millennium won't start until 
200 1 . It is also this tyranny of ten that dictates that my 
adolescence has just ended. 

~ Alejandro Jenkins in the Harvard Crimson 

So, in the Queen's remark "it's a poor sort of memory 
that only works backwards", the word poor is a 
'modifier', and thus expresses a subclass of its head- 
word memory (ideational); while at the same time it is 
an 'epithet' expressing the Queen's attitude 
(interpersonal), and the choice of this word in this 
environment (as opposed to, say useful) indicates more 
specifically that the attitude is one of disapproval. The 
words it's ... that have here no reference at all outside 
the sentence, but they structure the message in a 
particular way (textual), which represents the Queen's 
opinion as if it was an 'attribute' (ideational), and 
defines one class of memory as exclusively possessing 
this undesirable quality (ideational). The lexical 
repetition in memory that only works backwards 
relates the Queen's remark (textual) to mine only 
works one way, in which mine refers anaphorically, by 
ellipsis, to memory in the preceding sentence (textual) 
and also to / in Alice's expression of her own judgment 
I'm sure (interpersonal). Thus ideational content and 
personal interaction are woven together with, and by 
means of, the textual structure to form a coherent 
whole. 

~ notes for a class on Milton given by Stanley Fish 
at U.C.Berkeley in 1972, diligently saved by 

Cindy Watter 



Ravings from the Writing Desk 
of Stephanie Stoffel 

Greetings to one and all - and I've had the 
opportunity lately to think about each and every one of you, 
as I was putting the mailing labels on your packets of 
anniversary booklets and pins (those of you whose stamps 
were on crooked might like to know that your friend Lucy 
Lovett earned Christmas money by helping me with this 
mailing). It might have gone faster if I'd stuck on the labels 
without looking at them, but it was much more fun to read 
each one and think about you all, and where you live, and 
how long you've been involved. I know, or know of, many of 
you by now, and wish I had a chance to meet each of you. I 
realize of course that sometimes a person just wants to be 
on an organization's mailing list and is never going to be 
interested in going to meetings and becoming all gung-ho 
about it. So, my hope is that each of you is as involved as 
you want to be - that you will consider coming to a meeting 
if you haven't, that you'll contribute to the Knight Letter if 
you want, and that you'll be a part of the continuing dialogue 
on Lewis Carroll. 

If my reference to a 
ifies you, please know that 
received a 



pin (or just an 
booklet if you 
Toronto); if you ^ 
contact our see- 
Now, I 
last column but 
tell you about our 
Spring meeting 
have to look forward to 
New York: Hugues 
no doubt read articles 




mailing myst- 

you should have 

booklet and LCSNA 

errata slip for the 

were with us in 

haven't, please 

retary. 

promised in my 
one that I would 
program for the 
Here's what you 
n April 15, 2000, in 
Lebailly, whom you have 
about and by in the pub- 



lications of the British Lewis Carroll Society, will be repris- 
ing for us his Roger Lancelyn Green Memorial lecture on 
"The Victorian Cult of the Child". We will also be hearing 
Karoline Leach, author of the current book In the Shadow 
of the Dreamchild on Dodgson's relations with the Liddell 
family, and Abelardo Morrell and Leonard Marcus, whose 
illustrated edition of A W has come out recently. 

We will be meeting at the Century Club for lunch 
and this stellar program, so start now making travel plans 
and reading the works of our speakers to take advantage of 
your time with them. Look for your meeting notice with all 
the particulars in the late Winter. One last time, I must extend 
my and the LCSNA's thanks to Dayna McCausland and the 
Lewis Carroll Society of Canada for a fun and rewarding 
weekend in Toronto. And best wishes to you all for 2000 
and beyond - 



10 



Leaves from the Deanery Garden 

I have been reading the essay "To Stop A Bandersnatch" on 
the internet and have found it rather intriguing in association 
with the research I have been doing. I am an architectural 
thesis student at Philadelphia University. I am proposing a 
project using Alice in Wonderland and the language 
"techniques/methodologies" in conjunction with the play 
of scale and perception used by Lewis Carroll as a spring 
point for an architectural study. The study consists of first 
the thesis document and later an architectural project. 

Originally I was planning on investigating how literature can 
influence architecture. Due to the overwhelming volumes 
of information, I decided to narrow my search. So rather 
than abandon the idea alto- 
gether, I thought by choosing a 
particular piece of literature 
that was interesting and exciting 
and charged to formulate a 
translation into architecture. 
And knowing that almost no 
ideas are entirely original (that 
is to say, the translation is 
always different but the 
inspiration is often the same), I 
would imagine that some where 
out there some architect or 
designer has taken the trip down 
the rabbit hole and done his or 
her own archi-tectural 
investigation. So other than set 
designs (although that might be 
helpful too), do you know of 
anything that would fit into this 
category? 

First and foremost, the Disney 
Alice is something I am trying 
to avoid altogether. I don't want 

to use someone else's interpretations of the text. And 
Disney combines the two stories as one which I think kills 
them. Each story deserves to stand on its own. I guess what 
I was hoping for is not a "literal" translation of the book 
into a "theme park" type of construction - rather an inspired 
piece. Someone who did some theoretical problem and 
focused on the shifts in scale or the manipulation of the 
grammar. That sort of thing. 

I am inclined to think that I am not the first person in the 
world to have come up with such an idea. I was hoping that 
perhaps you might be able to point me in the direction of 
some artwork, architecture, or any other type of visual 
intervention that has been inspired by this piece of literature. 
I think that it would be tremendously helpful in my attempt 
to hone in on the objective of my endeavors. 

Thanks for any help you might be able to offer. 

Jaime Masler, that architect grrl 
jmasler@hotmail.com 





(To Charlie Lovett) Received a delightful package from the 
LCSNA this week and have absolutely enjoyed reading the 
various recollections and pieces in the LCSNA 25 lh Anni- 
versary book. Very well done. I really like the cover art! 
And for a newcomer like me, it gives me a wider and quite 
endearing view of what the society is about and a great 
appreciation for what founding and succeeding officers and 
members have contributed. Very glad that I joined! 

The pin is very lovely. I shall treasure it and wear it_ 

All the best, 

Julie Weiler 

Yes, a superb job on the book by August Imholtz, Stephanie 

Stoffel, and Charlie. Prizes all 
around!! The pin was 
suggested by Mark Burstein, 
designed by Jonathan Dixon, 
selected by a com-mittee 
including Pat Griffin, and 
underwriten by Charlie 
Lovett. 

I saw the Julia Margaret 
Cameron exhibit. [KL 61, p.22] 
It's great. I know CLD didn't 
like her, but sometimes he was 
too demanding. What's a little 
focus between friends? What a 
crazy person she must have 
been. 

I also read the Roberta Rogow 
Case of the Missing Miss 
featuring CLD and A. Conan 
Doyle. Worse yet, I bought it. 
It's awful - lack of 
characterization (you need 
more than CLD saying "It's 
logical" every whipstitch), 
weak plot, and a limp grasp of human behavior in the 
Victorian era. Or any era. It's very bad, but I should have 
known. It's a story about child prostitution, and the cover 
art was "Alice as Beggar Child", uncredited. 

Cindy Watter 





I just had to let you know of my pleasant surprise at receiving 
the new Knight Letter and finding "La Guida di Bragia"! It's 
nice to see it in a "popular printing", and I really like the use 
of the newsletter as a way of distributing little-known LC 
works. It reminds me of old Victorian magazines and the 
way they printed serialized novels and things. Any chance 
of publishing similar unpublished LC things in the future: 
interesting pamphlets, letters, etc.? 



11 



My pleasure was only marred by those stupid illustrations. 
Where did you find that hack artist? And yet. . . despite their 
boorishness and crude rustic humor, I find something about 
those drawings strangely magnetic, and can't resist staring 
at them for fifteen hours a day. If there are spare issues 
around, is there anyone to whom I should appeal for 2 or 3 
extra copies? My own copy is being worn out by the friction 
of my vision dragging across the pages. 

Much thanks, 





Jonathan Dixon 

Of course, the "hack artist" Jon is sarcastically referring 
to is himself Much praise has been deservedly lavished 
on him for this work! 

We are always looking for original Carroll material, un- 
or under-available. 

Copies of all back issues of the KL are handled through 
our Secretary. 

Answers to previous Queries 

Dodgson's letter of March 8th, 1891, to his niece Edith 
expresses sentiments about doing for others that are close 
to the quotes in the Knight Letter 61 [p. 17], though not 
nearly a direct hit. 

Clare Imholtz 

The letter reads " ...but also in acquiring all those habits 
needed for making the best of life. And I don't mean, by 
'the best of life ', the best for yourself, but the best for 
others. " A perhaps closer match was provided by Morton 
Cohen, who suggests the letter Dodgson wrote to Ellen 
Terry on 13 November, 1890, containing the sentence 
"And so you have found out that secret — one of the deep 
secrets of Life - that all, that is really worth the doing, is 
what we do for others?" CLD was expressing his 
appreciation for Miss Terry's willingness to take on Isa 
Bowman as a pupil. 

By now you must have received dozens of replies, but just 
in case: Edmund Wilson's "C.L. Dodgson: The Poet 
Logician" appeared in Wilson's collection, The Shores of 
Light (1952). It was reprinted in Phillip's anthology Aspects 
of Alice (1971) and in my casebook, Alices Adventures in 
Wonderland: A Critical Handbook (1969). 

Keep up the splendid work on the Knight Letter - it gets 
better in each new number! 




Best wishes, 

Donald Rackin 

Thank you, Don. Other correct replies were received from 
Ann Buki, who commented "At our meeting in May, the 
editor, Robert Phillips, mentioned that he found (when 
approaching him to reprint the essay) Mr. Wilson to be a 
rather prickly character... "; Bea Sidaway; and, naturally, 
Morton Cohen, who traced the original source to the New 
Republic, May 18, 1932, and also mentioned Wilson's 
review ofGernsheim 's LC: Photographer in the New Yorker, 
May 13, 1950. 



Queries 

Is anyone familiar with a 1912 novella called Bransford in 
Arcadia, or The Little Eohippus by Eugene Manlove 
Rhodes? An acquaintance described it as "a Western mystery 
with Carrollian clues". 

~ Cindy Watter 

While in Toronto I bought a charming little hard-bound book, 
The Original Alice by Sally Brown, published in 1997 by 
The British Library. Who is Sally Brown? I just wonder 
where she lives, and the usual biographical info. Age, 
experience, and general "claim to fame" type of stuff. Her 
little book is very well constructed, and a pleasure to read. 

I'm also thoroughly enjoying Stephanie Stoffel's well-packed 
"little" picture & info book [Lewis Carroll in Wonderland, 
Abrams/Discoveries '97] 

As I began reading the catalog of the exhibit we saw in 
Toronto, I got stumped (!) on the first "Solution-Word" 
("MediuM") to the second verse in the double acrostic 
Dodgson wrote to his friend Marion Miller (page 33). My 
question #2: How does one deduce the word "medium" from 
LC's verse 

"I trust," exclaimed her teacher, "you'll 

Never forget the golden Rule 

To treasure all you learn at school." 

Most friendly regards, 

Gary Meisters 
Lincoln, Nebraska 

My initial guess had to do with "medium " in the sense of 
either the arithmetic "golden mean" or the other "golden 
rule" of "nothing in excess". Readers? 



Answers to Punderland, p. 12: 


1. 


The caterpillar and his hookah 


2. 


Cheshire Cat 


3. 


Gryphon 


4. 


Duchess 


5. 


Flamingos & hedgehogs 


6. 


Father William 


7. 


Diamond, Heart, Club, Spade 


8. 


Ambition, Distraction, Uglification, Derision 


9. 


Dodo, Eaglet, Magpie, Parrot, Owl 


10. 


Croquet 


11. 


Tiger lily, rose, violet, larkspur 


12. 


fifth 


13. 


fire, house, fruit, May 


14. 


Bandersnatch, Unicorn 


15. 


Jabberwocky 


16. 


Tumtum tree 


17. 


Walrus, Carpenter, Oyster 


Selected explanations (which take such a dreadful 


amount of time) may be found on p. 16. 



12 



Contemporary Reviews of Sylvie and Bruno and Sylvie 
and Bruno Concluded 

by August A. Imholtz, Jr. 

In the Winter 1 979/80 issue of Jabberwocky - The 
Journal of the Lewis Carroll Society (U.K.), Vol. 9, No. 1, 
Dr. Selwyn Goodacre began to reprint all of the early reviews 
of Alice 's Adventures in Wonderland. Since the reprinted 
reviews, extending over several numbers of the journal, 
proved useful to Carroll scholars, we propose to follow Dr. 
Goodacre's example in reprinting all of the early reviews 
of Sylvie and Bruno and its sequel, Sylvie and Bruno 
Concluded, that we can locate. Unfortunately, Lewis Carroll 
did not provide later editors with a list of reviews as he had 
done for his first great work. For that reason our efforts 
may fall short of completeness, but we shall do our best 
and should provide at least more references than those 
offered in the Carroll secondary literature. The reviews are 
somewhat mixed, echoing a certain confusion born of the 
portmanteau plots and a disappointment in the preachy 
excursuses so unexpected in the author of Alice. Outland, it 
seems, lies a good distance from Wonderland. 

[This issue will print reviews of Sylvie and Bruno; 
Concluded in the next issue] 

The Critic , vol. 16, no. 326. Mar. 29, 1890 

It is a woeful thing to own to a disappointment in 
the author of 'Alice in Wonderland.' To have kept that 
irresistible volume (and its worthy successor, 'In the 
Looking Glass') enshrined in one's heart and bookcase ever 
since its first appearance; to have laughed over, and quoted 
it on all occasions in season and out; to have introduced its 
weird characters into many an entertainment of family 
dramatics, is certainly to be prepared to stretch out a warm 
hand to another book from the same source. But here is 
'Sylvie and Bruno,' beautifully printed, illustrated after the 
same charming fashion as Alice; and here is a reader who 
lays it down when finished with something like a groan. It is 
not because the author has avowed his belief that from the 
merry side of life young folks should be led to look upon 
the graver realities which are part of the lot of all humanity. 

Bowed to the earth with bitter woe, 

Or laughing at some raree-show, 

We flutter idly to and fro. 

Wisely, no doubt, he abandoned the idea of 
attempting to repeat his first success in a story on the lines 
of Alice. 'The path I timidly explored - believing myself to 
be "the first ever that burst into that silent sea" — is now a 
beaten high-road: all the wayside flowers have long ago been 
trampled into the dust; and it would be courting disaster for 
me to attempt that style again.' But no amount of imitation 
could dull the spirit, the delicious sense of humor, the close 
kinship to child's nature that won such quick response from 
English-speaking children of all lands. Any story coherent 
enough to enter the comprehension of a young reader could 
have been made to sparkle from his pen. But in 'Sylvie and 
Bruno,' there is such an extraordinary commingling of 



politics, and creeds and love making by elders, with dream- 
journeys, quips and quirks, rhymes and rambles for the 
young, that it is well-nigh impossible to find the intention 
of the guide. Save for the delightful visit of the two little 
people to Dogland, one looks vainly for a chapter suitable 
to read aloud to a pair of longing ears in whose recesses 
memories of Alice faintly sound like the horns of Elfland. 
There is the long dolorous ballad of Paul and Peter, 
disclosing to young minds a phase of human nature repulsive 
in the extreme. There is the merry jingle of the Buffalo upon 
the Chimney-piece. There is a bit as welcome as spring 
dandelions in the grass, about the fairy Sylvie and the 
wounded Beetle. There is the droll Rhyme of the Three 
Badgers - and then, and then - what then? It is an ungracious 
duty to say even so much as this, in trying to speak truth, 
and it is to be hoped that the testimony so given may prove 
that of one individual only, and that other eyes may be open 
to what these have failed to see. 

The Academy , No. 920, Dec. 21, 1889 

What are we to say about this new book by "Lewis 
Carroll"? No critic who calls to mind the innocent delight 
which Alice has given to tens of thousands of both young 
and old will take pleasure in speaking unkindly of its author. 
But Ah, the pity of it! It is not always granted, even to a man 
of genius, to repeat his original success after the lapse of a 
quarter of a century. Whether it be due to the strange method 
of composition disclosed in the preface, or to the effort of 
working an exhausted vein, or to the change of temperament 
in advancing years, it must be sorrowfully confessed that, 
as a whole, Sylvie and Bruno is a failure. Not that Sylvie 
and Bruno themselves are not worthy of kinship with their 
immortal elder sister, or that some of their doings and 
adventures are not told with all the old humour and charm. 
But the setting of the story, the humans that are introduced, 
their preachings and their love-entanglements, are, in our 
opinion, positively intolerable; nor is the book any the better 
for being twice the length of its predecessors. If possible, 
we should suggest the following course, at any rate to one 
who proposes to read out loud to a juvenile audience. Let 
him begin at the top of p. 190 and go on continuously to p. 
221 — this, it is pleasant to know, was the germ of the story; 
then let him begin again from p. 226 to p. 234, and, after 
skipping some more pages — but not the "Song of the Three 
Badgers" — read the whole of chapters xx. and xxiv, and there 
stop, for he will never find Sylvie or Bruno again. Perhaps 
he may then feel encouraged to begin at the beginning; but 
we can assure him that he will become weary and puzzled 
long before he reaches the end. The task of getting on will 
be not a little lightened by the pencil of Harry Furniss, who 
has proved himself a not unworthy successor to John Tenniel. 
His gardener, his professor, and his animals are first rate; 
and his children are always charming, even when they have 
to wear black stockings. 
The Athenaeum , No. 3245, Jan. 4, 1894 

A book of which the key-note is topsy-turvyness 
ought surely to be produced in a somewhat topsy-turvy 



13 



manner, so it is not surprising to find from Mr. Lewis 
Carroll's preface that he first collected his incidents and 
dialogues, or fragments of them, and then invented a story 
to use these to the best advantage. He reveals, in fact, in his 
preface his method of composition. The chapters headed 
"Fairy Sylvie" and "Bruno's Revenge" are, with some slight 
alterations, reprinted from a tale in Aunt Judy's Magazine, 
1867. Not till seven years after its publication did the idea 
of making it the nucleus of a longer story present itself to 
the author's mind. 

"As the years went on," writes Mr. Carroll, "I jotted down, at 
odd moments, all sorts of odd ideas, and fragments of dialogue, 
that occurred to me — who knows how? — with a transitory 
suddenness that left me no choice but either to record them then 

and there, or to abandon them to oblivion And thus it came to 

pass that I found myself at last in possession of a huge unwieldy 
mass of litterature — if the reader will kindly excuse the spelling — 
which only needed stringing together, upon the thread of a 
consecutive story, to constitute the book I hoped to write. Only! 
The task, at first, seemed absolutely hopeless, and gave me a far 
clearer idea, than I ever had before, of the meaning of the word 
'chaos' : and I think it must have been ten years, or more, before 
I had succeeded in classifying these odds-and-ends sufficiently 
to see what sort of a story they indicated: for the story had to 
grow out of the incidents, not the incidents out of the story." 
Such was the "genesis" of 'Sylvie and Bruno.' Being 
written by Mr. Lewis Carroll, it is needless to say that it is 
full of amusing things, and not without some of "the graver 
thoughts of human life"; nevertheless it falls far below 'Alice 
in Wonderland,' and the illustrations of Mr. Harry Furniss 
are by no means worthy of his reputation. The narrator is an 
impersonal being who comes and goes like Miss Meadows 
and the girls in "Uncle Remus," and never takes much more 
shape. He lapses into fairyland every time he falls asleep, 
and returns without any sense of strangeness; and so well is 
this managed that we accompany him thither with perfect 
ease, and are quite as able to make the best of both worlds 
as he is. The characters are numerous. There is a warden 
who is deposed from his wardenship, and finds refuge in 
fairyland as king — a sub-warden with a wicked and very stout 
wife, who "looks like a haystack out of temper" — a 
distinguished doctor who has "actually invented three new 
diseases, besides a new way of breaking your collar-bone!" 
He wears boots specially made for horizontal weather, and 
is so clever that "sometimes he says things that nobody can 
understand." There is another professor who lectures with 
his back turned to the audience, and a gardener who breaks 
out into snatches of song which have the old ring: — 
He thought he saw an Elephant, 
That practised on the fife: 
He looked again, and found it was 
A letter from his wife. 
"At length I realize," he said, 
"The bitterness of Life!" 

All these characters, and others too, are amusing, 
but Sylvie and Bruno are, as they ought to be, more 
interesting and amusing still. From first to last they are 
delightful. Bruno, who is addressed "Y'reince," an 
abbreviation of "your Royal Highness," is even more 



fascinating than Sylvie. '"I hope you have had a good night, 
my child,' said the Professor to him. Bruno looked puzzled. 
T's had the same night oo've had,' he replied. 'There's only 
been one night since yesterday!'" Again, when the two 
children encounter the Gardener, who, being told by Sylvie 
that Bruno is her brother, asks, "Was he your brother 
yesterday?" — 

'"Course I were!' cried Bruno, who had gradually crept nearer, 
and didn't at all like being talked about without having his share 
in the conversation. 'Ah, well! ' the Gardener said with a kind of 
groan. 'Things change so, here. Whenever I look again, it's sure 
to be something different! Yet I does my duty! I gets up wriggle- 
early at five — '. 'If I was oo,' said Bruno, T wouldn't wriggle so 
early. It's as bad as being a worm!' he added, in an undertone to 
Sylvie. 'But you shouldn't be lazy in the morning, Bruno,' said 
Sylvie. 'Remember, it's the early bird that picks up the worm!' 
'It may, if it likes!' Bruno said with a slight yawn, T don't like 
eating worms, one bit. I always stop in bed till the early bird has 
picked them up! ' T wonder you've the face to tell me such fibs! ' 
cried the Gardener. To which Bruno wisely replied, 'Oo don't 
want a face to tell fibs wiz — only a mouf" 

Bruno does not like snakes, they are too "waggly"; 
he is not "praticular," but he likes "straight animals best." 
He goes through his gardening most conscientiously, 
carefully conforming to the rules of Elfland. Being asked 
by the impersonal narrator what he is going to do with a 
dead mouse he has with him, he answers, "Why, it's to 
measure with! However would oo do a garden without one? 
We make each bed three mouses and a half long, and two 
mouses wide." 

Padding, according to Mr. Lewis Carroll, may be 
fitly defined as "that which all can write and none can read." 
He does not absolutely affirm that there is none in the 395 
pages in which the story of Sylvie and Bruno is told, but 
does affirm that it is confined to a few lines here and there, 
which have been inserted to eke out a page in order to bring 
a picture into its proper place. He asks his readers to 
discover three lines of this kind which lurk in a passage 
extending from the top of p. 35 to the middle of p. 38. These 
three lines of padding, however, must either be undeserving 
of the epithet, or there must be other bits of the same kind 
in the same pages, else there would be no difficulty in 
disinterring them. A free use of padding is, however, a charge 
that could never be brought against so gay and witty a writer 
as Lewis Carroll, and if his definition be true, proof will be 
given that padding is absent, for 'Sylvie and Bruno' is sure 
to be much read. 

The Nation, No. 1289, Mar. 13, 1890 

Nobody but the author of 'Alice in Wonderland' 
and 'Through the Looking-Glass' could have written 'Sylvie 
and Bruno,' and yet the marvel is that he did write it, and 
allow it to go out with his name attached to it. He is, however, 
a clergyman, and it is quickly seen that 'Sylvie and Bruno' 
is a tract. In his preface he urges the need of a Child's Bible, 
a book of pieces selected from the Bible, a collection of 
passages (both prose and verse) from books other than the 
Bible, and a Shakspere[.s/c] for girls. He introduces in the 
same place a little sermon on theatre going, rather raising 



14 



the question than settling it: "I also go to the play," he says, 
"whenever I get a chance of seeing a really good one"; and, 
"if Shakspere was not inspired, one may well doubt if any 
man ever was." In the course of the story he delivers himself 
forcibly on the sin of hunting, against the Puritan Sunday 
for children, against the preaching of religion as a 
commercial speculation, and the immunity of the pulpit to 
talk "shallow twaddle that, if it were addressed to you over a 
dinner-table, you would think, 'Does the man take me for a 
foolV" 

These intrusions, if we must regard them as such, 
may win friends for the author's personality, but they quite 
defeat any aim on his part to make a continuously amusing 
book. No human being can read 'Sylvie and Bruno' with smile 
or grin from beginning to end. It is in his old and proper 
view of phantasmagoria which could "go round and walk on 
the top of its tail, and along its back, all the way to its head." 
Another humor of the book is its serio-comic index. The 
great American people, hugging its protectionist delusion, 
is aptly figured in the mob of the opening chapter shouting, 
"Less bread! more taxes!" 

The Spectator , January 18, 1890 

The author whose nom deplume is "Lewis Carroll" 
is in the practically unique position of having written a 
sequel which was quite as good as — if, indeed, not better 
than the original. Between Alice Through the Looking-Glass 
and Alice in Wonderland it is hardly possible to make a 
choice, both are so super-excellent in the realms of 
nonsense and topsy-turvy. Yet, in spite of an achievement 
so remarkable, Mr. Lewis Carroll has failed in his attempt 
to produce a third work which can be put on a level with his 
first volume and its continuation. We have had plenty of 
Singlespeech Hamiltons in literature before, but a two-book 
author is almost a lusus liter arum. 

Sylvie and Bruno, judged by the very high standard 
which Mr. Lewis Carroll's previous work forces us to apply 
to his performance, is unquestionably a failure. True, there 
are a hundred things which remind us of what the volume 
might have been, but placed as they are, they bring little but 
a sense of regret and disappointment. If we may be allowed 
Wordsworth's phrase, the wiser mind mourns in Sylvie and 
Bruno less for what is not to be found there, than for what 
is left behind. Unfortunately, the author often replaces his 
former joyous outpourings from wells of nonsense 
undefiled, by matter of very serious import — matter which 
would come under Charles Lamb's translation of Coleridge's 
motto, "Things proper for a sermon." Disquisitions on the 
cruelty of hunting, and the raising and satisfying of doubts 
as to the Christian religion, are surely out of place in a record 
of Fairyland. Neither they nor the delicate and iridescent 
fooling which surrounds them gain by juxtaposition. Nor is 
this less true of the tedious and unsatisfactory grown-up 
love-story which is interwoven with the tale of the elf- 
children and of all the strange characters of Outland. If Mr. 
Lewis Carroll could be persuaded to cut out all the 
extremely self-conscious moral and religious reflections; 



all the stuff about the "I" of the narrative, except where it is 
necessary for the machinery of the tale; all the love-making 
that centres round the Earl's daughter; and, in fact, everything 
that he has made happen in the ordinary world; and were to 
leave only the pleasant residuum of inspired inconsequence, 
he would very greatly improve his book, and would make it 
in some sense worthy to rank with his former efforts. 
Doubtless even then we should be obliged to say, "The 
second temple is not like the first," but at any rate we should 
have a very pleasant addition to the literature of the inverted 
mind. 

After having made so much of moan over what 
might have been, we will utter no other word of complaint, 
but will merely attempt to introduce our readers to a few of 
the best of the good things in Sylvie and Bruno. Of these, 
the "Mad Gardener's Song" must be named first, because it 
carries us back to such delightful rhymes as "The Walrus 
and the Carpenter," "You are old, Father William," and "A- 
sitting on a gate." The present lyrical effusion is scattered 
up and down the book, and not presented in one 
inconsecutive whole, for the Mad Gardener carols forth his 
snatches of song much as does Ophelia. Since, however, 
they are never a propos of anything in particular, we shall 
venture to collect them all together, in order that our readers 
may verify our declaration that they are almost worthy to 
stand by the side of the song the White Knight sang to Alice 
in the realms of the Looking-Glass: — " 
He thought he saw an Elephant, 
That practised on a fife: . . . 
[the poem was reproduced in full] 

Here we have at its best that dextrous mixture of 
irrelevance of thought and conventionality and 
commonplaceness of phrase upon which Mr. Lewis Carroll 
has always so greatly relied to evoke the spirit of laughter. 
The aptitude for seeing the potential fun in some homely 
and well-worn sentence such as "The bitterness of life," "I 
should be very ill," or "There won't be much for us," though 
astonishingly acute in Mr. Lewis Carroll is not, however, 
confined to him. Mr. Gilbert possesses it in a marked degree, 
as is shown by hundreds of instances in his operas. Again 
and again, his best hits have been produced by suddenly 
turning the limelight of humour full upon some banal and 
every-day expression, out of which all sense and meaning 
has been worn by constant repetition. "Hardly ever," "It 
sometimes is a convenient thing," "All very agreeable girls," 
or "They usually objected," will occur to every reader's 
mind. But Lewis Carroll excels every other humorist in his 
power of matching his commonplace propositions with 
some extravagant and fantastic image. For example, the 
manner in which the laugh is compounded in the rhyme about 
the Banker's clerk is alike beyond praise or imitation. 

The story of the nonsense-part of Sylvie and 
Bruno — the only part we care to dwell on — is simple 
enough. Practically it consists of the doings of a little elf- 
boy and girl — the Sylph and the Brownie — the son and 
daughter of the Warden of Outland, afterwards promoted to 
be King of Fairyland. The conspiracy hatched by the wicked 



15 



Vice- Warden, his wife, and the Chancellor, the odd doings 
of the two old Professors, and the children's wanderings in 
Dogland, are some of the more amusing incidents, and over 
all is a pervading atmosphere of topsy-turveydom. Though 
not the funniest, one of the most fascinating episodes in 
the book is "The Frog's Birthday Treat," to which we must 
specially direct the attention of our readers. Before taking 
leave of Sylvie and Bruno, we must say a word as to Mr. 
Furniss's drawings. Those which have to do with things 
strange, unreal, and fantastic, are excellent and full of spirit 
and humour, except only that Sylvie is a little too like a ballet- 
girl. As to those in which the ordinary human element 
predominates, we cannot help expressing a less favourable 
opinion. "Easy, vulgar, and therefore disgusting," was an 
infamously bad criticism of Lycidas, and would doubtless 
be far too strong a judgment to apply to Mr. Furniss's 
attempts at grace and beauty. Still, there is undeniably in his 
efforts to portray subjects other than the purely grotesque, 
an element which suggests the famous phrase just quoted. 
Possibly, however, a fairer criticism would be conveyed in 
the words applied by a modern poet to the statesman whom 
Mr. Furniss has so constantly and so ably caricatured: — 
"Such wit, such humour, and such lively force, 
The whole so clever — must we add, so coarse?" 

Though in no way coarse in the worst sense of the 
word, those of the drawings that are meant to be pretty are 
devoid of all true delicacy or refinement of feeling. 



Selected Explanations for the Answers, 
p. 12 

1. Catarrh 

2. Che's shire cat 

3. (Merv) Griffin 

4. Dutch "S" 

5. Flaming "0"s 
7. Spayed 

10. "Croak, eh?" 

14. Band, er, snatch | unique corn 

15. Jabber/walkie (-talkie) 
17. Wall'R'Us 




The following letter was seen by August Imholtz 
in a Carroll exhibit at the Free Library of 
Philadelphia's Rare Book Department and is 
reproduced with their permission. It is printed here 
in a more legible handwriting font than Mr. Rack- 
ham's . The recipient is officially "unknown", but 
August hazards a guess in Carroll bibliographer 
Sidney Herbert Williams. While we're on the 
subject, August thinks that Rackham's Mad Hatter 
may be a self-caricature, below. 

HOUGHTON HOUSE, 

HOUGHTON , 

ARUNDEL . 

26 Oct. 22 
Dear Sir 

In/ reply to- your letter of 2 yu ^ / 
ashing- -for cv note/ on/ "Alice/ in/ 
Wonderland/', I'm/ going- to- ask/ 
yow to- execute/ me/. I have/ illus- 
trated/ it, & partXcularly ay I am/ 
Still/ financially interested/ in/ it I 
feel/that I had/ better notpublish 
any remarks about it. 

My experience/ of the/ booh, as it 
hoppers, was absolutely delight- 
ful/. So- far as I rernernber I was not 
very young/ when/ 1 first had/ it. 
About 10. And/ it was read/ aloud/ 
to-ay(3 about same/ age/ 11, 10, 9 
say) • by my father & at once/ be- 
came/ a/ household/ word/. Ay it was 
presented/ to- us it gave- us no diffi/- 
culty. out I awv inclined/ to- think/ 
there is a/ custom/ of giving- it to- 
children/ when/ they are/ too 
young-. It is possible/ that my 
father's- full/ appreciation/ of it 
helped/ as children/ too-. It was 
read/ to us with full/ drcunatic 
affect, the/ songs sung/ & so forth. 

Altogether an/ wnforgettable/ & 
epoch/ marking- event in- my life. 
But I think/ 1 had/better say noth- 
ing- in print, if you/ wilt kindly let 
me/off 

Youry sincerely 
AKVHUK KACKHAM 



16 




<5©Jf ^§(©#P^ 8c 




A Note on the Publication of Martin 
Gardner's The Annotated Alice: The 
Definitive Edition 

How many notables in history, 
do you think, can claim to have es- 
tablished a new genre in literature, 
music, or art? By and large, genres 
evolve rather than appear in an in- 
stant. The novel, the serious play, the 
narrative poem, the opera, the musi- 
cal, painting in oils or watercolors - 
no one person can claim to have 
establishing the genre. Most of the 
time, we cannot even point to the 
individual or team who first popular- 
ized the form. 

That makes Martin Gardner an 
exquisite exception, for clearly he 
deserves credit for establishing the 
relatively new genre of the "Anno- 
tated" text, How many "Annotated" 
works have appeared in the wake of 
the first Annotated Alice since it was 
published in 1960? Dozens surely, 
and the genre is now securely imbed- 
ded in our literary culture. 

And yet, as we know so well, 
establishing this genre is only a small 
part of Martin's achievement. His 
other work on Lewis Carroll, and 
especially on the puzzles and games, 
would be sufficient to establish his 
international reputation. But he has 
ranged far and wide beyond Carroll. 
He has written children's books and 
novels, he has contributed to many 
branches of the tree of science, he 
has proven himself a sound and 
relentless debunker of pseudo- 
science, speculative myths, and 
prejudice masquerading as religion. 

All hail Martin Gardner; the 
Lewis Carroll community owes you a 
great debt. May you continue to thrive 
and rage far into the new millennium 
for the betterment of all. 

~ Morton N. Cohen 




As Gardner sows, so shall we reap 

Martin Gardner's new "Defin- 
itive Edition" of his Annotated Alice 
(Norton, 1999, 0-393-04847-0, $30), 
- see note, left - a portmanteau combin- 
ing material from the 1959 and 1990 
editions (but without the Newell illustrations), has been 
redesigned and updated with material discovered in the 40 
years since the first publication and the decade since the 
latter, with additional material including the "Wasp in a 
Wig", newly discovered Tenniel pencil sketches, and a 
fihnography by our own David Schaefer. Adam Gopnik's 
essay in the New York Times Book Review, 5 December, 
1 999, says that Gardner's mind, "compellingly split between 
a fist-class skeptical intelligence... and a heartfelt love of 
the fantastic and irrational, is a high product of its era". 
Furthermore, a second edition of Gardner's autobiography 
The Whys of a Philosophical Scriverner has just been 
reissued in paperback (Griffin, 0312206828, $18). 

"Cult" maybe, "Fiction" for sure 

A book by English (!!) journalists Andrew Calcutt 
and Richard Shephard, called Cult Fiction: a Reader 's Guide 
(Prion Books, U.K. or Contemporary Books, U.S.) gives 
page-long synopses of the lives and careers of authors who 
have built up a cult following. The accuracy of their opus 
may be gleaned from the following: "Lewis Carroll... was a 
fastidious and exacting man who always wore gloves, even 
in the hottest weather... The character of Alice was based 
on Mary, the second daughter of Henry George 
Liddell...The stories... were devised during boating trips in 
which Dodgson was accompanied by Mary Liddell. . ." They 
then go on to discuss the sixties, "White Rabbit", and "I am 
a Walrus" [sic], ending with a recommendation to read Jeff 
Noon's abominable Automated Alice and the works of 
Angela Carter. Thanks a lot. 

Bradburied Alive 

The news for Oz-philes is quite good: the 
University Press of Kansas has produced a stunning new 
release of The Wonderful Wizard of Oz (The Kansas 
Centennial Editon, 0700609857, $25) with superb 
scratchboard drawings and wood engravings by Michael 
McCurdy. Unfortunately, the Baum-bastic preface by Ray 
Bradbury comes off terribly in favor of Oz at the expense 
of Wonderland. Calling Wonderland a "winter landscape" 
where Alice's friends "perpetually sneer", and coming up 
with such statements as "If you unlocked the door of a 
desolate mansion minus central heating, a proper hot water 
bath, and a kitchen, all knives and no spoons, you must 
certainly find Alice's Janus friends, two-faced but mostly 
facing north, pleased by blizards and bloodless tantrums. 



17 



Your slumbers would be one long glide off a glacier into a 
lake of cold soup." Saying the reader of Carroll must be "a 
cynic, a skeptic or just a disillusioned drop-out", he makes 
no friends among us. For completists only. 

Give me a Levenger and a place to stand 

Levenger Press is reprising two lesser-known 
works, Eight or Nine Wise Words About Letter-Writing and 
Feeding the Mind, containing 32 original illustrations by 
Edward Koren, perhaps best known for his cartoons in The 
New Yorker. (See our cover). Koren's exuberantly detailed 
drawings of fat minds, skinny pens and intrepid letter- writers 
capture Carroll in all his inspired whimsy. "It is high time 
that these two essays by Lewis Carroll were back in print 
and available for readers," said Morton Cohen, who saw 
prototypes of the books this summer. Both books contain 
forewords by Edward Wakeling. The books, each a 
diminutive 4 W by 6 '/a", are bound in green leather and have 
a second color of the author's "customary violet ink". These 
two limited editions are available exclusively through 
Levenger, the upmarket catalog company known for its "tools 
for serious readers" (www.Ievenger.com). Order by phone 
(800.544.0880) or online at www.levengerpress.com. Cost 
is $30 for each book or $50 for both. In celebration, the 
Levenger catalog also has a Tweedledum inkwell ($40), 
Alice's house of cards ($20), a new editon of Carroll's word- 
game "Syzygy" as a game with tiles ($35), and many great 
things for readers. Also http://www.levengerpress.com/ 
#FeaturedBooks has an inteview with Edward Wakeling. 

Colorfully Classic 

Harcourt Brace has published an American edition 
of Macmillan's 1995 set of AW/TTLG in two full-color 
hardcover volumes in a handsome slipcase. The books 
maintain the arrangement of words and art agreed upon by 
Carroll and Tenniel for the first edition, and the texts include 
the changes made to them during his lifetime and also 
incorporate the prefaces, poems, and letters added to various 
later editions. Two artists colored the Tenniel illustrations: 
Victorian artist Harry Theaker handcolored eight plates for 
each of the books in 1911, and Diz Wallis finished the rest 
of them in 1995 and 1996. These are the only editions with 
all of Tenniel's original art in full color in the correct 
arrangement currently available, the Random House / Fritz 
Kredel set being out of print for over fifty years. 
015202199X, $35 the set. 

An Austrian Alice Artfully Arrayed 

by Jan Susina, Illinois State University 

Lisbeth Zwerger, the Austrian book illustrator and 
the 1990 winner of the Hans Christian Andersen Medal for 
Children's Literature, has produced a new Alice's 
Adventures in Wonderland (North-South Books, 1999, 0- 
7358-1166-0, $20) and was recently in the United States 
to promote the new edition. While most Americans are 
familiar with the Caldecott and the Newbery Awards which 
are given out annually by the American Library Association 
to the outstanding American picture book artist and 



children's author, respectively, the Andersen Medal is more 
prestigious in that it is awarded every two years by the 
International Board of Books for Young People to an author 
or artist whose body of work has provided a lasting 
contribution to children's literature - their Nobel Prize. 
Other past winners have included Astrid Lindgren, the 
Swedish author of the Pippi Longstocking series; Tove 
Jansson, the Finnish author and illustrator of the 
Moomintrolls books; and the distinguished American Mau- 
rice Sendak. While Zwerger was in New York City, I was 
able to conduct an interview via telephone. 

A significant artistic turning point for her was the 
discovery of Arthur Rackham's work, and she credits English 
book illustrators such as Ernest Shepard, Heath Robinson 
and John Leech as important artistic influences. She also 
feels that a book's pictures "must be in keeping with the 
artist's style" and that they "should not resemble their 
predecessors". Zwerger's first illustrated book was E.T.A. 
Hoffmann's The Strange Child (1977). Other fairy tales 
followed, including the Grimm's Hansel and Gretel (1980) 
and Hans Christian Andersen's The Nightingale (1984), as 
well as classic children's stories such as L. Frank Baum's 
The Wizard of Oz (1996) and Charles Dickens' A Christmas 
Carol (1988). A selection from her twenty books of dream- 
like and delicate watercolors, which have developed a 
popular following in more than twenty countries, are 
collected in The Art of Lisbeth Zwerger (1993). 

Zwerger compared Alice in Wonderland for a book 
illustrator to an actor playing Hamlet, in that it is a challenge 
of a lifetime. I asked her how a contemporary artist, given 
the intimate relationship between Tenniel's illustrations and 
Carroll's prose, can attempt to provide a new interpretation. 
She explained that she tried to free herself from Tenniel's 
drawings, choosing to let Carroll's text speak for itself. 
Where so many illustrators of Alice have simply modernized 
Tenniel's images, Zwerger tried to avoid the obvious. Her 
clever drawing of the Mock Turtle is true to the text but 
manages to do something different from Tenniel. Given the 
dissatisfaction between Carroll and Ten-niel, Zwerger felt 
that this allowed her to distance herself from the original 
artist. Despite her appreciation of Rackham, she tried not 
to be influenced by his style either, although she admitted 
that perhaps a bit of it might have slipped in somewhere. 
Nor did she consult Carroll's own illustrations of Alice's 
Adventures under Ground. 

While relying primarily on Carroll's text, Zwerger 
also consulted Martin Gardner's Annotated Alice for 
background information. For Zwerger, "fairytale illustration 
and fairy-tale research are two different things", and con- 
sequently she read much secondary criticism. She feels that 
"to illustrate a fairy tale is not an intellectual or scientific 
interpretation, but a transposition of internal pictures and 
feelings". So rather than attempting to picture Wonderland 
within a historical Victorian context, it is put in a timeless 
situation. 

The other major source of inspiration for her were 
Carroll's photographs of young girls. What impressed 



1! 



Zwerger most about those images was a sense of stillness, 
sadness, and slight unhappiness, feelings which haunt her 
own interpretation. Wonderland becomes a slightly unpleas- 
ant place and one that Alice willingly wishes to escape from 
as soon as possible. Zwerger presents Wonderland as "a 
weird place, full of weird people". One of the most 
interesting aspects of comparing different drawings in the 
Alice books is that the artist must develop a personality for 
Alice as well as providing the atmosphere for Wonderland. 
While not exactly the threatening nightmare that some critics 
and illustrators have envisioned, Zwerger 's vision is clearly 
no dream. 

Wonderland is a world that Alice is grateful to leave 
- the final image presents Alice so eager to escape that she 
is literally rushing out of frame, and Zwerger mentioned 
that she enjoys presenting characters who are either leaving 
or coming into a drawing, and indeed many of her pictures 
show Alice in a fragmented view or moving off the page. 
Not surprisingly, Zwerger mentioned that after completing 
Alice in Wonderland, she didn't have a great urge to go on 
to Through the Looking-Glass - the first book was grim 
enough. Only after she was done did Zwerger came across 
the last photograph that Carroll took of (the adult) Alice 
Liddell, an image that seemed to convey the same feelings 
of sadness, distance, and melancholy that Zwerger had been 
attempting to achieve. She has suggested that some of the 
"most beloved are ambivalent characters" and that Alice 
seems to be one of those figures who have a "tragicomic 
touch" that need "to be freed from melancholy and lone- 
liness". 

Just as Alice is a bit more somber and muted 
character than that found in other editions, Zwerger's palette 
is a more muted and earth-toned, her watercolors providing 
a very dream-like and mysterious feel. The one exception 
is the pair of bright red stockings that Alice wears in an 
arresting illustration where she is trapped in the White 
Rabbit's house - the point of view seems to be peeking up 
her red stockings, which caused me to ask if Zwerger was 
hinting at a sexual reading. She just laughed and said that 
she was sorry to disappoint me, but that she had just wanted 
to draw red stockings. 

Zwerger's Alice is a consistently melancholy 
maiden rather than the spunky, spirited and curious child 
that many others present, seeming here to be a counterpart 
to the sad young girl playing alone in Giorgio De Chirico's 
"The Melancholy and Mystery of a Street". Her Alice is 
often pictured with downcast eyes or a somber expression. 
Equally melancholy are the three little girls who lived in 
the treacle well, who really do look quite ill. 

The book was published in Germany prior to pub- 
lication in the United States, and some reviewers have 
questioned if Zwerger has presented Alice as too serious 
and pale. As Susan Koppe has observed, "in spite of her love 
of beautiful patterns, ornaments, and delicate arrangements, 
she resists sentimentality." Zwerger's vision is of a much 
more serious and stoic character, not necessarily enjoying 
Wonderland, and she adds "Well, /wouldn't. It's a bit nasty 



and Alice is always being ordered about." 

Zwerger's illustrations provide a very European 
sensibility to a very English text. It is a curious and 
compelling combination and well worth careful 
examination. 

Contrariwise 

Helen Oxenbury's simultaneously published illus- 
trated AW is of an entirely different order. In a review in 
The New York Times, 21 November, 1999, Rebecca Pepper 
Sinkler calls Oxenbury's Alice "a pretty little thing in sneak- 
ers and a blue jumper right off the rack at the Gap. She's 
spunky and cheerful and cute. Also fearless and wholesome. 
And Lewis Carroll's Alice wouldn't cross the street for a 
play date with her. Unchangingly upbeat, (her drawings) miss 
the subtext of a story that is, for all its whimsy, about the 
terrifying instability of identity." Sinkler speaks of a "car- 
toon quality" to all of Oxenbury's creatures, contrasted to 
Zwerger's more adult, harrowing rendering. A nice edition 
for children, nonetheless. 

Here in the U.S. it is available as a paperback from 
Candlewick Press ($25); in the U.K. as a hardcover (£15), a 
set of four prints (£5) or playing cards (£5) or in a boxed 
Limited Edition (£60) from Walker Books, 87 Vauxhall 
Walk, London SE11 5HJ England; +44.171.793.0909. 




Carrollian 

Notes 



It Wood Be Nice 

As we move into the 21st Century there is a unique 
way of celebrating the life of Lewis Carroll - planting trees. 
To mark the centenary of his death, the Woodland Trust, 
working closely with The Mersey Forest, the Daresbury 
Lewis Carroll Society and the Cheshire County Council, is 
creating a new wood at his birthplace in Daresbury, Cheshire. 
One hectare of land adjacent to the birthplace has been 
purchased for the creation of the Lewis Carroll Centenary 
Wood as part of its national millennium project which aims 
to create 200 new woods throughout England and Wales. 

The Lewis Carroll Centenary Wood will be owned 
and managed by the Woodland Trust forever and will be freely 
open for visitors to enjoy peaceful walks and quiet 
reflection. This piece of the beautiful rolling Cheshire 
landscape will also be home to the Lewis Carroll Centenary 
Feature - a hexagon of six oak trees, encompassing a stone 
medallion, inscribed with Lewis Carroll's signature, echoing 
his fascination for mathematics. 

The aim is to plant 1,800 native broadleaf trees 
including oak, ash, wild cherry, dog rose, rowan and hazel. 
The creation of new habitats will also benefit many species 
of wildlife including snipe, partridge and skylarks (but not 
Snarks). 

A donation of just £10 will help plant and care for 



19 



one tree. By so doing you would: 

• help create a lasting memorial to Lewis Carroll. This 
wood should be here for the next 1,000 years, or more. 

• be a part of an important environmental project for the 
21st Century. 

• receive a personalised certificate - a perfect gift for 
any Carrollian. 

Contact: The Lewis Carroll Appeal, Woodland Trust, Autumn 
Park, Grantham, Lincolnshire, NG31 6LL, England; +44 
1484 609510; www.woodland-trust.org.uk; JudithStuttard@ 
woodland-trust.org.uk. 

Oliver and Dee's Excellent Adventure 

The award-winning Canadian program "Mentors", 
an innovative half-hour series premiering on the Family 
channel on Sunday, January 2 at 6:30 pm (encore showings 
each following Friday at 6:00 ET/PT), follows the adventures 
of two teenagers, Oliver and Dee, who discover a way to 
transport legendary historical figures into the present for 
36 hours, "calling upon famous personalities to mentor them 
through the challenges of their lives". Produced by Anaid 
Productions and Minds Eye Pictures and filmed on location 
in Edmonton, Mentors was the recent recipient of a 1999 
Alliance for Children and Television Award of Excellence 
for Best Drama. Targeted to a family audience, the series 
features Oliver Cates, a 15-year-old computer genius who 
invents Visicron, an amazing computer technology with the 
ability to zap famous figures into the present for 36 hours. 
It features Thomas Cavanagh as Lewis Carroll in one 
episode, but I haven't been able to determine that particular 
air date. See www.family.ca. 
Exhibiting Bad Behaviour 

Lewis Carroll's handwritten manuscript of Alice's 
Adventures under Ground is to be found at the Library of 
Congress' exhibition called "John Bull and Uncle Sam: Four 
Centuries of British-American Relations". The show, 
through March 4, is part of the celebration of the 
bicentennial of the library, founded in 1800. August Imholtz 
writes "The whole exhibit is terrible. The card describing 
the Underground [sic] MS is full of errors, e.g., "the manu- 
script was written for Alice Liddell, the daughter of a friend" 
and Carroll "slipped it into her Christmas stocking in 1 864." 
The manuscript is placed in a case with political history 
materials, especially World War II and Marshall Plan items, 
without any explanation of what it has to do with the post- 
World War II American goodwill gesture orchestrated by 
Librarian of Congress, Luther Evans. I have written to the 
Library of Congress asking to give a talk about the MS to 
correct a few things. To give you an idea of the logic of the 
exhibition, a notebook of Orville Wright's calculations is 
placed above a flush toilet developed by Thomas Crapper." 

Now I've got a headache 

The otherwise admirable site of the Migraine 
Awareness Group (MAGNUM) at www.migraines.org has 
an "Awareness Art Gallery" section on famous sufferers, 
which includes this paragraph: "One of the more interesting 



artist-Migraine relationships is the fine-art photographer 
and author Lewis Carroll... One of his albumen prints, circa 
1862, is of his niece, Alice. [This is illustrated with CLD's 
photograph of Mary Millais.] His books were heavily 
influenced by his Migraine experience. For example, a well- 
accepted interpretation of the Cheshire Cat is as a symbol 
of the Migraine disease itself. The Cheshire Cat has a 
tremendous influence on Alice's adventures and only reveals 
itself to Alice. Remember: Migraine is an 'invisible' 
disorder.... Other references in Carroll's adventures include 
Alice being blinded by the moonlight (Migraine sufferers 
are extremely light-sensitive), and the many references to 
hallucinations and drugs: 'One pill makes you smaller, one 
pill makes you larger, the pills mother gives you do nothing 
at all,' observed the Cheshire-Cat.'" 

[They have been very cooperative in our correspondence, 
and Sandor and I will be working up a much better 
informed paragraph for this worthy organization.] 

Weaving the Dream 

Cindy Watter 

The fall Dreamweavers' Young Actors Theatre 
Program (Napa, CA) production was "Alice in Wonderland". 
This fine show was directed by U.C.Santa Cruz theater arts 
graduate Katie O'Bryon, and featured dozens of local young 
people. James LaVoy was a hen-pecked King of Hearts and 
a rather Noel Coward-ly Lewis Carroll; Jennifer O'Bryon 
was an outstanding singing and dancing Alice; Mallory 
Wedding was a sinuous, scene-stealing Cheshire Cat, 
wearing a beret and "cat eye" sunglasses. 

The play owed a little to Andre Gregory and a lot 
to Carroll. Staging was clever, using a mix of styles from 
English Music Hall to Noh drama. The costuming and set 
decor were of necessity low-budget but very creative, holding 
to a checkered chessboard motif. The cups at the Mad Tea 
Party appeared to be made out of old 45s, flowerpots, and 
cookie cutters; the Red Queen's scepter was a bright red 
(new, I hope) plunger. 

Opening night refreshments had a Victorian tea 
party theme, with an amazing variety of teapots, cakes, and 
biscuits. This was an enjoyable night out because the director 
had a strong cast and emphasized fun over weirdness, 
remembering it was an entertainment for children, but the 
grown-ups enjoyed it, too. 

A Life Examined 

The erudite and charming Peter Heath, Professor 
of Philosophy at the University of Virginia and President 
emeritus of the LCSNA is the subject of a captivating 
interview in a 42 (of course) minute videotape entitled 
"Lewis Carroll in Wonderland", covering many fascinating 
aspects of this lifelong Carrollian. It is available for $35+$3 
s/h from VAVideo Associates, 1130 Marion Drive, 
Charlottesville VA 22903 (also available in PAL format). 

Dear Mrs. Beck Johnston, who produced this and 
edited it down from six hours of raw footage, lost her life 
in a disastrous house fire this past summer. May she rest in 
peace. 



20 



A Hole Lot of Nonsense 

It started with an article in The Times (London) on 
September 15, 1999, wherein Nigel Hawkes and Nick 
Nuttall reported from the British Association for the 
Advancement of Science (meeting in Sheffield) on a talk by 
Tony Cooper of the British Geological Survey. The cause 
of Alice's fall, he said, was the soluble gypsum rock that 
underlies Ripon in North Yorkshire. At regular intervals the 
dissolving rock causes collapses that create holes large 
enough to swallow buildings. 

He said that Lewis Carroll was brought up near 
Ripon and had visited the town many times. Not only must 
he have been aware of the holes, but there is another 
connection: Carroll's father had a close friend, Canon 
Badcock, who lived at Ure Lodge in Ripon. His daughter, 
Mary Badcock, was later used by Carroll as the model for 
Alice's appearance. He gave a photograph of her to John 
Tenniel, the artist who drew the original illustrations, with 
instructions that this was how he wanted Alice to look. 

In Carroll's day there were many collapses in the 
fields opposite Ure Lodge and it is likely that in 1834 he 
visited a dramatic hole that opened up about 300 yards 
northeast of the house. This left a shaft more than 60' deep 
and 35' in diameter, with solid rock exposed at the sides. 

'"Down, down, down. Would the fall never come 
to an end!'" Alice thought to herself as she fell. In Carroll's 
time, he alleged, the holes were indeed believed to be 
bottomless. Near the village of Croft, where Carroll grew 
up, was Hell's Kettle, a huge hole filled with water. 
Prosaically, divers who have plumbed its murky water in 
recent times have found it is a mere 20' deep, but that was 
presumably unknown to Carroll. 

The dissolving rock under Ripon is gypsum — 
chemically, calcium sulphate — originally laid down when 
the area was under an enclosed sea in tropical temperatures 
more than 250 million years ago. The evaporating sea left 
behind the gypsum sheets that lie sandwiched between water- 
permeable limestones. Underground streams flow through 
the gypsum, said Dr. Cooper, at depths of 100' to 350'. Over 
the years channels form as the gypsum dissolves. Eventually 
the rock is so weakened that it can no longer support the 
overlaying ground. 

In Carroll's day, Ure Lodge was the solid home of 
a clergyman. But in 1997, a huge hole appeared close to the 
house, destroying a row of four garages. The house itself 
has now been demolished. 

A letter in The Independent (London) two days 
later from the Reverend David Felix, Vicar of Daresbury, 
replied "Sir: Lewis Carroll (Charles Dodgson) did not 'grow 
up' in Yorkshire but here in Daresbury, Halton, where he 
was born and lived for the first 1 1 years of his life. As for 
the source of the rabbit holes, you need only visit my garden 
and our churchyard to see where the true source of his 
inspiration lies. Cheshire rabbits must have far better 
excavation skills than their Yorkshire friends and relations." 



Down, down, down, down, down 

Without giving us much of a chance to recover 
from the NBC debacle, the trades have been alive with 
announcements of what promises to be the most gdawful 
production yet - possibly the worst conceivable. It is due to 
be released next year. If the Y2k bug does not cause the end 
of Western Civilization, here is a backup plan. Quote: 

"Dateline: London. A new film about Alice in 
Wonderland depicting the caterpillar as a dope-smoking 
Rastafarian and the Mad Hatter's Tea Party as a rap concert 
is to be released next year. 

The musical version of Lewis Carroll's book is to 
star the teenage pop idol Britney Spears in the role of Alice, 
and Ricky Martin, the Latino singer, as the Mad Hatter. 

Instead of dreaming about the White Rabbit — as 
she does at the start of the book — the action starts when 
Alice is run over by a VW Rabbit. 'After that it's chaos,' 
said the screenwriter Sarah Thorpe. Instead of finding a tea 
party hosted by a sleeping dormouse and a Mad Hatter, 'she's 
in the midst of a rock 'n' roll, hip-hop musical that's far 
from anything Lewis Carroll imagined.' [Indeed.] 

MTV, which is making the movie, describes the film 
as a 'contemporary musical' and is cagey about discussing 
the finer points beyond saying the script is still being 
'tweaked'. But early drafts suggest that the Mad Hatter will 
appear as a talent scout at his own party, intent on spotting 
young singers, the Queen of Hearts is the Queen of Pop and 
the caterpillar is a spaced-out junkie. 

In this aspect, the role of the caterpillar departs 
little from how Carroll imagined him, puffing on a hookah. 
'It has room for incredible cameos,' Thorpe said. 

The composer of the music for the movie has not 
been named. 

'I'm amused,' said Kenn Oultram, the Founder and 
secretary of the Daresbury Lewis Carroll Society. He said 
he felt particularly positive about this version because it 
was so far removed from the book. 'All previous versions 
of Alice films have flopped, because they have tried to keep 
to Lewis's text. But it doesn't lend itself to the cinema 
screen.' The film will be the fulfilment of Carroll's 
longstanding dream that his book be turned into a musical. 

Though the star of the MTV version, Spears' acting 
ability has only been tested so far by playing a stewardess in 
a Hollywood film, Jack of All Trades. 

The MTV film likely will be the sexiest Alice in 
Wonderland ever made. Spears, loved as much for her 
pneumatic physique as her ability to sing, is far removed 
from the swottish Oxford don's daughter upon whom the 
book was based." 

Run for your lives!! 




21 



From Dor rar-^wQ' 

Books 

The Dictionary of Imaginary Places 
by Alberto Manguel and Gianni 
Guadalupi has been updated since its 
1980 release and reissued by Harcourt 
Brace. 0151005419. $40. 

An Exhilaration of Wings: The 
Literature of Birdwatching, edited by 
Jen Hill contains a section by LC. 
Penguin Putnam 0670887242. $26. 

Eating the Cheshire Cat : A Novel by 
Helen M. Ellis, Scribner, $23, 
068486440. Not much save the title. 
The Grolier Club's Gazette #50 prints 
Morton Cohen's 1998 lecture "I'm Not 
a Collector, But...". (Not for sale.) 

"A Sage's Journey: The Story of 
Tangrams" (including a free tangram 
puzzle set) by MathMaverick Press, $8 
incl.p&h; P.O.Box 41, Waterford CT 
06385; www.mathmaverick.com. CLD 
was particularly fascinated by 
tangrams. 

Exhibitions and Events 

A drawing entitled "Alice in California" 
by Grace Slick was exhibited at 
Buckley's Place in Tiburon (CA) on 20 
November as part of a fundraiser. 

Two very large (3') humorous ceramic 
heads of the Duchess (wearing a 
Cheshire Cat t-shirt) and "Alice Gets a 
Job" (as a waitress) by Tony Natsoulas 
were exhibited September - December 
as part of the "Contemporary Crafts" 
show in the lobby of One Bush Street, 
San Francisco. The artwork is for sale 
by the Virginia Breier Gallery at 
415.929.7173. 

The Columbus (OH) Museum of Art is 
displaying the life-size "Alice in 
Wonderland: A Grand and Curious 
Chess Set" by Joan Wobst through Jan. 
23, 2000. 

On 12 October, COLT Telecommun- 
ications teamed up with Starlight 
Children's Foundation to host a 
celebrity-studded AW-themed party at 
the Kensington Roof Gardens to grant 
wishes to 28 seriously ill children 
from all over London.. 




Correspondents 



Articles 

"Alice's Discriminating Palate" by 
Kevin W. Sweeny in Philosophy and 
Literature, Vol. 23 No. 1, April 1999, 
identifies the content of the bottle 
labelled "Drink me" as a Grand Cru 
white Burgundy from Alice's 
description of its taste, and discusses 
the aesthetics and theories of the 
gustatory sense. 

Our sister organization, the Lewis 
Carroll Society of Japan, has begun 
publication of an excellent periodical, 
Lewis Carroll Studies, of pieces in 
English with summaries in Japanese. 
No. 1, 1999 weighs in at 130 pages of 
scholarly articles by Japanese writers, 
under the editorship of Tsutomu Hosoi. 
Contact : L.C.S.J., c/o Dept. of English 
Literature, Teikyo University, 358 
Otsuka, Hachioji-shi, Tokyo, 192- 
0352 Japan. 

"Creating a Wonderland of Your Own" 
in the Columbus (OH) Dispatch, 24 
November, 1999, describes activities 
for children to use their imaginations 
in the manner of AW. 

"Curiouser and Curiouser", Celia 
Wren's superb article on the theatrical 
adaptations of AW, particularly the 
darker modern versions, appears in the 
December (not October) issue of 
American Theatre magazine, Vol.16 
#10. 

"Hinter dem schwarzen Tuch der 
Plattenkamera", a review of Morton 
Cohen's Reflexionen im Spiegel, the 
German editon of Reflections in a 
Looking-Glass, in the Frankfurter 
Allgemeine Zeitung, 30 November. 

'"Him, and ourselves, and it': On the 
meaning of the 'evidence poem' mAW 
by Karl Maroldt in Semiotica, 118-1/ 
2 (1998). "Pronouns have an indexical 
or deictic function..." 



"Metamorphopsia of the AW 
Syndrome" (in Dutch) in the Ned 
Tijdschr Geneeskd, 19 December 
1998. 

"Mirror, mirror" in The Economist, 
November 20, 1999, discusses the 
neurobiological implications of D- 
serine, a "right-handed" amino acid 
discovered a few years ago in Japan. 
According to The Proceedings of the 
National Academy of Sciences, a team 
of researchers at Johns Hopkins have 
dicovered therapeutic properties - the 
whole discussion being in context of 
Alice's question of whether looking- 
glass milk was good to drink. 

Performances 

Philadelphia-based American Theater 
Arts for Youth is touring a musical AW 
to 18 states this season. http://www. 
theaterforyouth.org/. 

"Alice Lost Wonderland", September, 
the Broadway Pier in San Diego CA, 
depicted "the forces that shape a girl 
as she navigates the bumpy waters of 
adolescence" in Gina Angelique's pas- 
sionate, socially aware choreography. 

"Malice in Wonderland" by the Bird 
Theatre "contemporary Irish dance 
loosely based on the tales of Lewis 
Carroll", Cheltenham, 3 1 Oct. 

The Queensland (Australia) Ballet 
celebrates its 40th anniversary in 2000 
and will open its season with AW 
choreographed by Francois Klaus. 

AW in giant puppets, 19-21 October 
1999 at the Bardavon theater in 
Poughkeepsie, NY. 

Places 

The Sunday Times (London) in an 
article on "Self catering cottages with 
literary associations" described "The 
Duchess", a 17th-century former inn 
near Dartmoor national park (which) 
has been turned into an AW treasure 
trail. Clues have been left throughout 
the property, leading treasure-hunters 
to the key to The Duchess's secret. 
Sleeps up to four; no children under 
eight. Book with: West Country 
Cottages +44(0)1626-333678. 



22 



Video 

"The Hunting of the Snark & 
Jabberwocky" (KL 61, p.23) can also 
be ordered from http://www.firstrun 
features.com/. 800.229.8575. From 
the L.A. Times: "With fluid dissolves, 
fine lines, sunbursts of color, firelight 
reflecting like melted butter, a curling, 
churning ocean, electric movement and 
a sense of wonder, this short film is 
unmistakably an artist's vision, 
enriched further by James Earl Jones' 
narration and composer Caleb 
Sampson's score." 

Art and Artifacts 

Hand-made key rings including several 
A ^characters from Lark Rise Designs, 
11, Julia Avenue, Monks Cross, 
Huntington, York Y039JR, U.K. 
+01904.653065. 

A pewter keyring in the shape of a book 
with "Lewis Carroll" on the front and 
"Sentence first: verdict afterwards" on 
the back, from Novelkeys. 

That Disappearing Cheshire Cat Mug 
can be found at a reduced price ($5) in 
the Wireless catalog. 1.800.669.9999. 

A great "Pop-Up" card of the mad tea 
party from Santoro Graphics. 
248.656.7681. 

Set of 4 cast resin ornaments (4" tall) 
from "Someplace in Time" ($30 for the 
set). 800.366.0600. 

Ten hand painted bone china porcelain 
candle snuffers from Bronte portray 
the stars of the books (3" high, $140 
apiece) from "The English Channel" at 
http://www.english-channel.com/rf/ 
wonderland.html. Or enquire at Retail 
Futures Ltd, Vine House, 16 New 
Street, Ledbury, Herefordshire, HR8 
2DX, U.K; +44 (0) 1531 637100; 
Fax:+44 (0) 1531 637109; customer 
service@the-channels.com. 

The British Hedgehog Preservation 
Society has a fabulous "Hogalogue" 
containing every possible artifact - 
ties, cards, sweaters, stuffed toys, 
jewelry, videos, etc. Hedgehog House, 
Dhustone, Ludlow, Shropshire, SY8 
3PL England; 01584 890801; http:// 
www.software-technics.co.uk/bhps/. 

Member Dede Satten writes "For quite 
a while (years!) I had been looking for 
a Dodo from the Royal Daulton Bes- 



wick collection. I finally found it and, 
in case others are looking for Toby 
mugs or figurines, they might want to 
contact this company: Jim Eldert at 
Pascoe & Company, 800.872.0195 
ext. 109; 101 Almeria Avenue, Coral 
Gables, Florida 33134." 

Donald A. Peters fine lithograph ($57) 
of a garden landscape with miniature 
Alice characters can be seen at http:// 
members.aol.com/ojaiarts/. Order 
from Artsteeles@aol.com; or Diane 
Steele, 323 E. Matilija St. PMB 169, 
Ojai, CA. 93023; 805.646.5702 

Alice coloring book, produced by Roni 
Akmon of Blushing Rose Publishing, 
San Anselmo. 11" by 14", Tenniel- 
esque, but the faces are different. $7. 

Cyberspace 

An article on "Lewis Carroll and fuzzy 
logic" ["fuzzy pensiero"] with many 
internet links appeared in the online 
edition of the Italian journal "II Sole 
24 Ore" (28 Nov. 99) www.ilsole 
24ore.it/ 

SoftLock (www.SoftLock.com) allows 
cyberusers to purchase e-copies of 
books. Recently announced is A W from 
Boson Books. Why a user should pay 
$10 for something so available in 
cyberspace and in the public domain 
remains a mystery. 

Remember "MadLibs"? where you 
enter an animal, a piece of furniture, 
and so on and a story appears - in this 
case, in the style of TTLG. http:// 
www.netsprout.com/mad/mad2.html 

Kathy Donohue-Vredevoogd's "Lewis 
Carroll Illustrated" site has many fine 
links: http://www.rust.net/~kdonohue/ 
alicel.html. 

A fascinating study guide for grades 6 
- 12 can be found at http:// 
edsitement.neh. fed. us/guides/ 
g6_b2.htm. Called "Childhood Through 
the Looking-Glass", it "explores the 
vision of childhood created by Lewis 
Carroll in AW. Students begin by 
looking at Carroll's photographs of the 
real Alice for whom Carroll imagined 
his story and compare the image of 
childhood that he captured on film with 
images of children in our culture." Then 
they compare Carroll's vision of 
childhood with that presented by 

23 



'Songs of Innocence and Experience'. 
Finally, students consider the interplay 
of image and text in their own favorite 
children's literature and how the vision 
of childhood presented there 
compares to their experiences as 
children". With ties to the Victorian 
Web and other resources, it teaches 
"visual art analysis, literary 
interpretation, research skills, critical 
thinking, (and) Internet skills." 

Ingeborg Gastel is very proud of her 
20 ,h -generation link to CLD, traced 
through royal genealogical lines. The 
visitor is only slightly disturbed by an 
applet saying "Punch the Monkey and 
Win $20". http://worldroots.com/bri 
gitte/famous/1/lewiscarrollline.htm. 

Eric Harshbarger's four-foot tall, 126- 
level LEGO® brick sculpture of Alice 
is visible at http://www.ericharshbar 
ger.org/lego/alice.html. 

Auctions 

Christie's (London) 29 November sale 
of a single-owner collection included 
"a note from Queen Victoria apparently 
inviting Charles Dodgson to a garden 
party but, in fact, written by the author 
himself for the amusement of the 
Drury sisters" (Minnie, Ella, and 
Emmie), photographs of them, and a 
series of copies of his books inscribed 
to them is expected to fetch upwards 
of £30,000. His relationship with these 
sisters is somewhat rare in that he kept 
up a friendship with them all their lives, 
even squiring Minnie's daughter, Aud- 
rey, to the theater. 

Two brilliantly colorful tempera/ 
watercolor illustrations by Aleksander 
Koshkin for a Russian AW were part of 
an "Original Children's Illustration Art" 
auction by Pacific Book Auction 
Galleries, 21 October 1999. Follow 
upcoming auctions online at 
www.pacificbook.com or write to 133 
Kearny St, 4 th Floor, San Francisco CA 
94108.415.989.2665; pba@pacific 
book.com. 

Academia 

On July 15-18, 1999, the Canadian and 
British Societies for the History of 
Mathematics met at the University of 
Toronto. There Robin Wilson, 
professor of mathematics at the Open 



University (England) and his troupe of 
mathematician-actors gave a reprise of 
their sold-out performance of a skit on 
Carroll's mathematical life given at the 
most recent annual meeting of the 
American Mathematical Society. Fran 
Abeles also gave a paper on Carroll's 
version of pari-mutuel betting. 

Media 

"Alicia a l'Espanya de les Meravelles" 
1978 (85 m.), dir. Jordi Feliu broadcast 
on Barcelona television in October. 



The Adventures of Elmo in 
Grouchland. "A very AW-ish 'Sesame 
Street' spinoff in which little fire- 
engine-red Elmo gets sucked into a 
vortex that leads him straight to 
Grouchland, where he has to deal with 
talking caterpillars, a quirky queen and 
a Mad Hatter-ish villain with eyebrows 
so furry they could cover the world." 

The 51st Annual Primetime Emmy® 
awarded by the Academy of Television 
Arts & Sciences for "Special Visual 



Effects for a Miniseries or a Movie" 
was won by Hallmark's adaptation of 
AW shown on NBC. 

Being John Malkovitch - see KL 60, 
p. 12 - extraordinarily Carrollian in 
texture, structure, and references. A 
must-see. 

Alice in Cyberspace by David 
Demchuk, a 10-part series airing on 
Canada's CBC Radio One's "This 
Morning" from Dec. 20 to 3 1 at 9 a.m. 



Membership / Order Form Name 

Membership: □ New or □ Renewal Address 

□ Regular ($20) 

□ Contributing ($50) ' 

□ Change of Address 

□ Publication Order E-mail 

Publications : 

□ Snark illustrated by Dixon / members $10, others $15 □ 

□ Proceedings of the 2nd International LC Conference I members $10, others $15 □, deluxe $50 □ 

□ Mathematical pamphlets I members $52, others $58 □ 

□ In Memoriam (CLD's obituaries) / members $10, others $15 □ 

□ Knight Letters, $2 each, Numbers: 

□ Grolier exhibit catalog "CLD, alias LC" / members $15, others 20 □ 

□ LC & the Kitchins, $5 

□ LC: An Annotated International Bibliography (ed. Guiliano), $5 

□ Kaufmann Snark $75 °® a superb boxed deluxe edition at an unbelievable price (orig.$400) 

Further details on these publications are in KL 57, p. 19, or are available from the secretary. Please 
photocopy this form & send it along with a check to The Secretary, LCSNA.18 Fitzharding Place, 
Owing Mills MD 21117. Prices include tax and postage. 



Edward Koren's illustrations on the front cover and on p.9 are from Feeding the Mind (see p. 18) and are 

reproduced with the permission of Levenger. 



For help in preparing this issue thanks are due to Fran Abeles, Earl Abbe, Alice Berkey, Sandor Burstein, Angelica 
Carpenter, Llisa Demetrios, Johanna Hurwits, August Imholtz, Janet Jurist, Horst Muggenburg, , Lucille Posner, Bea 
Sidaway, Stephanie Stoffel, Barbara Szerlip, Alan Tannenbaum, Cindy Watter, and Nancy Willard. 
Knight Letter is the official journal of the Lewis Carroll Society of North America, published several times a year 
and is distributed free to all members. Subscriptions, business correspondence, and inquiries should be addressed to 
the Secretary 1 8 Fitzharding Place, Owing Mills MD 21 1 17. Annual membership dues are U.S. $20 (regular) and $50 
(sustaining). Please send submissions and editorial correspondence to the Editor, Box 2006, Mill Valley CA 94942. 
President: Stephanie Stoffel, StephStoff@aol.com Secretary: Elite Luchinsky, eluchin@erols.com 

Vice President and Editor: Mark Burstein, wrabbit@worldpassage.net 
Lewis Carroll Society of North America Home Page: www.lewiscarroll.org/ 
The Lewis Carroll Home Page: www.lewiscarroll.org/carroll.html 



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